Early Evidence of a Down June

Reports are coming in today that suggest June will be a down month for car sales in the United States.

According to estimates, the SAAR for the month could be 2.3% to 3.6% lower.

Here’s an excerpt from the LMC Automotive/J.D. Power forecast via Seeking Alpha:

The LMC Automotive/J.D. Power forecast is for a 2.3% drop during the month to 1.48M units, although the overall diagnosis is equally cautious. “While the retail selling rate has declined in four of the first six months, the broader concern remains the negative health indicators behind the sales results,” notes J.D.’s Deirdre Borrego.

According to the published report, General Motors Co.’s Chief Financial Officer Chuck Stevens told analysts during a conference call yesterday that the company expects U.S. light vehicle sales to be in the low 17 million-unit range for the year, down from the automaker’s original forecast of 17.55 million units, which implies a decline in the forecast of around 1% or 2%. Stevens told analysts that there is “very, very conservative” pricing in the industry and “rational” stance on incentives. Unfortunately, we’ve previously seen OEM executives portray the market as more “conservative” than it actually is.

Our view is that generally auto originations mirror the SAAR — perhaps not to the basis point, but certainly directionally. We expect the current auto and credit cycle to continue at a similar trajectory at least through yearend.

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