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Auto Sales Expected to Decline in April for 4th Straight Month

| May 2, 2017

Auto Sales Expected to Decline in April for 4th Straight Month

The future resale value of a vehicle, projects total new vehicle sales, including fleet deliveries, will reach 1,440,200 units in April, down 3.9 percent from a year ago and nearly flat on a selling day adjusted basis at -0.2 percent.

This month’s seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) for total light vehicle sales is an estimated 17.1 million units for the month, down 1.9 percent from a 17.4 million-unit SAAR a year ago. Excluding fleet sales, U.S. retail deliveries of new cars and light trucks are expected to decline 4.8 percent with 1,190,657 units and down on a selling day adjusted basis at -1.2 percent.

“Despite higher incentives and nearly flat sales (on a daily sales rate basis), there is positivity in the April sales numbers,” said Eric Lyman, chief industry analyst for ALG, which issued the report. “Historical ALG data indicate Easter weekend sales are typically 2 percent lower than average, putting April 2017 at a disadvantage since the holiday fell in March last year. Also, fleet deliveries continue to drop on a year over year basis, indicating that retail demand is still driving sales in 2017.”

Incentive spending by automakers may average an estimated $3,465 per vehicle in April, up 13.9 percent from a year ago, and down 2.5 percent from March 2017.

Other key findings for April:

  • Registration mix is expected to be 82.7 percent retail sales and 17.3 percent fleet versus 83.5 percent retail and 16.5 percent fleet last April.
  • Total used auto sales, including franchise and independent dealerships and private-party transactions, may reach 3,318,537, down 0.8 percent from April 2016.

Category: Featured, Vehicles

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