Thursday, October 7, 2010

Auto Sales

The Lehmann Letter (SM)

The Bureau of Economic Analysis has released September new-vehicle sales: .

Scroll down to the “Motor vehicles” link and go to table six of the spreadsheet. You’ll see that new-vehicle sales were 11.7 million in September.

Now compare that to the historical data in the chart. There’s been a gradual recovery from recession lows, but it’s been a slow ascent. New-vehicle sales remain at levels not seen since the 1981-82 recession and earlier slumps.

Chart 5.5 New-Vehicle Sales

(Click on image to enlarge)

Recessions shaded

These figures are all part of the weak-economy syndrome. Auto sales were on a 16 - 17million annual plateau from the late 1990s to 2007. Now they are on an 11 -12 million annual plateau. What will break them loose so that they can rise to their earlier level?

That's the key question. Its answer will probably show us the way to renewed robust conditions.

(The chart was taken from [Click on Seminars and then Charts.] Go there for additional charts on the economy and a list of economic indicators.)

© 2010 Michael B. Lehmann

No comments: