by Calculated Risk on 2/04/2020 12:15:00 PM
Tuesday, February 04, 2020
The following graph shows heavy truck sales since 1967 using data from the BEA. The dashed line is the January 2020 seasonally adjusted annual sales rate (SAAR).
Heavy truck sales really collapsed during the great recession, falling to a low of 180 thousand SAAR in May 2009. Then sales increased more than 2 1/2 times, and hit 480 thousand SAAR in June 2015.
Heavy truck sales declined again in 2016 - mostly due to the weakness in the oil sector - and bottomed at 363 thousand SAAR in October 2016.
Click on graph for larger image.
Following the low in 2016, heavy truck sales increased to a new all time high of 575 thousand SAAR in September 2019. However heavy truck sales have declined since then and are off 11% year-over-year.
Heavy truck sales were at 467 thousand SAAR in January, down from 473 thousand SAAR in December, and down from 527 thousand SAAR in January 2019. The recent weakness is probably due to the weakness in manufacturing and the decline in oil prices.