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Monday, September 30, 2019

September Vehicle Sales Forecast: 16.8 Million SAAR

by Calculated Risk on 9/30/2019 09:27:00 AM

From JD Power: Record Q3 Spending Accelerates Auto Sales After Year's Slow Start

New-vehicle retail sales in September are expected to fall from a year ago, according to a forecast developed jointly by J.D. Power and LMC Automotive. Retail sales are projected to reach 1,007,000 units, a 15.2% decrease compared with September 2018. Controlling for the number of selling days, this translates to a decline of 7.8% from last year on two fewer selling days. (Note: This year excludes the Labor Day holiday and has one fewer weekend than September 2018.)
Total sales in September are projected to reach 1,244,000 units, a 13.3% decrease compared with September 2018. Adjusting the results for two fewer selling days results in a decline of 5.8%. The seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) for total sales, which normalizes sales for the exclusion of the Labor Day holiday and one fewer weekend this year, is expected to be 16.8 million units.

“After delivering record sales results in August, when retail sales rose 6.2% on a selling-day adjusted basis, the decline in September sales was expected and reflects a quirk in how the industry reports sales. The large decline in sales this month is driven primarily by the timing of the Labor Day holiday. Unlike most years, sales from the Labor Day holiday weekend were included in August sales reporting instead of September. With close to 250,000 new vehicles sold during the holiday weekend, the exclusion from September reporting is significant.”
emphasis added
This forecast is for sales be solid in September, but down from 17.0 million SAAR in August, and down from 17.3 million SAAR in September 2018.