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Economy in Brief

U.S. Light Vehicle Sales Improve M/M, Weaken Y/Y
by Tom Moeller  May 2, 2017

Total sales of light vehicles increased 1.6% during April to 16.88 million units (SAAR), according to the Autodata Corporation. Despite the monthly rise, sales declined 3.0% y/y. During the first four months of 2017, sales averaged 17.17 millions units, 1.4% below the first four months of 2016.

Light truck sales increased 1.5% (1.2% y/y) versus March to 10.46 million. Imported light truck sales increased 14.1% (13.3% y/y) to 1.88 million units, a four-month high. Sales of domestically-made light trucks eased 0.8% (-1.1% y/y) to 8.58 million units. Trucks' share of the U.S. vehicle market was unchanged m/m at 62.0%, but increased from 59.4% twelve months earlier.

Passenger car sales improved 1.6% (-9.1% y/y) to 6.42 million units. Domestically-made passenger car sales increased 2.2% to 4.70 million units (-8.8% y/y), but remained near the lowest level since December 2011. Sales of imported passenger cars were flat (-9.9% y/y) at 1.73 million units.

Imports share of the U.S. vehicle market improved m/m to 21.4%. Imports share of the passenger car market eased to 27.0%. Imports share of the light truck market jumped to 18.0%, up from 12.7% during all of 2014.

U.S. vehicle sales figures are published by the Autodata Corporation and can be found in Haver's USECON database.

Light Weight Vehicle Sales (SAAR, Million Units) Apr Mar Feb Apr Y/Y % 2016 2015 2014
Total 16.88 16.62 17.58 -3.0 17.55 17.42 16.52
 Autos 6.42 6.32 6.53 -9.1 7.11 7.72 7.92
  Domestic 4.70 4.60 4.67 -8.8 5.20 5.63 5.68
  Imported 1.73 1.73 1.86 -9.9 1.91 2.09 2.24
 Light Trucks 10.46 10.30 11.05 1.2 10.44 9.70 8.60
  Domestic 8.58 8.65 9.28 -1.1 8.75 8.34 7.51
  Imported 1.88 1.65 1.77 13.3 1.68 1.36 1.09
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