Monday, December 03, 2007

November Car Sales Rise: Good News or Bad News?

According to Motor Intelligence, light vehicle sales in November were 16.2 million unit on a seasonally-adjusted annual rate (SAAR), see chart above (click to enlarge). That exceeded the average estimate of 15.9 million in a survey of eight analysts and 12 economists.

Compared to October, sales on a SAAR basis increased by 2.6% in November, and compared to November 2006, sales increased by close to 0.50%. During the last year, auto sales (SAAR) have averaged 16.2 millions per month, the same as sales in November. Given the subprime mortgage crisis, and all of the talk about credit tightening, rising oil prices and a pending recession, vehicle sales of 16.2 million units in November seems like pretty good news, doesn't it?

Well you would never know that from the media reports today, here are some examples:

November auto sales weak

US Nov. auto sales weak; Ford, GM cut output

US auto sales weaken in Nov. as caution mounts

Carmakers warn of tougher times ahead in US

Pessimism Over '08 Could Crimp Auto Production

US auto sales fall 2% in November

Auto prospects for 2008 look grim

Carmakers report so-so November, expect weak 2008

Weak November a hint of what's to come for auto industry in 2008


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