by Calculated Risk on 2/04/2020 09:22:00 AM
Tuesday, February 04, 2020
The BEA released their estimate of January vehicle sales this morning. The BEA estimated light vehicle sales of 16.84 million SAAR in January 2020 (Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate), up 1.2% from the December sales rate, and up 0.8% from January 2019.
Light vehicle sales in 2019 were revised down slightly to 16.95 million, down 1.5% from 17.21 million in 2018.
Click on graph for larger image.
This graph shows light vehicle sales since 2006 from the BEA (blue) and an estimate for January 2020 (red).
A small decline in sales last year isn't a concern - I think sales will move mostly sideways at near record levels.
This means the economic boost from increasing auto sales is over (from the bottom in 2009, auto sales boosted growth every year through 2016).
The second graph shows light vehicle sales since the BEA started keeping data in 1967.
Note: dashed line is current estimated sales rate of 16.84 million SAAR.
Sales have been generally decreasing slightly, but are still at a high level.