Vehicle sales slow in September
Oct. 3, 2013 – September vehicle sales slowed to a seasonally adjusted 15.3 million units, annualized, due in part to a portion of Labor Day weekend sales occurring at the end of August, NAFCU Senior Economist Curt Long said.
Those holiday sales might otherwise have been captured in September, Long said in a NAFCU Macro Data Flash report.
On a seasonally adjusted basis, total vehicle sales in September decreased from August’s rate of 16.1 million annualized units. Over the past 12 months, sales are up 3.4 percent. “Pent up demand, low interest rates and slow improvement in the labor market have all contributed to the 12-month boost in vehicle sales,” Long said. “However, the government shutdown and debt ceiling confrontation may have caused some buyers to delay major purchases last month.”
Car sales decreased from August’s level of 8 million annualized units to 7.7 million annualized units in September; sales of light trucks decreased from August’s level of 8.1 million annualized units to 7.6 million annualized units in September.
Two of the six largest automakers reported increases in their year-over-year sales numbers. Ford reported the strongest gain in sales with 5.7 percent, followed by Chrysler (0.7 percent). General Motors sales had the largest decline, 11 percent, followed by Honda (down 9.9 percent), Nissan (down 5.5 percent) and Toyota (down 4.3 percent).
The U.S. brand share of the total vehicle market increased from 43.9 percent in August to 45.1 percent in September. The share of domestically assembled vehicles decreased from 77.8 percent to 77.7 percent.
“Overall, vehicle sales have been contributing to the broader economic recovery,” Long said.
NAFCU Macro Data Flash report