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Economy in Brief

U.S. Vehicle Sales in June Lowest Since 1993
by Tom Moeller July 1, 2008

At 13.64 mil. (SAAR), U.S. sales of light vehicles in June fell 4.6% from May and they were down 13.1% from June of last year, according to the Autodata Corporation. The latest level was the lowest since early-1993 and it pulled sales down 15.8% so far this year. The level of vehicle sales also was lower than Consensus expectations for sales of 14.0M.

Overall, sales of domestically made light vehicles fell 6.0% last month and were off 19.7% YTD. They were at the lowest level since 1991.

Higher gasoline prices continued to hit sales of relatively fuel inefficient domestically made light trucks. Sales fell 2.5% after May's 9.8% decline. That brought the decline this year to 27.4%. Sales of U.S. made cars reversed all of their May gain with a 9.5% decline to the lowest level in the series' history which dates back to 1990.

Sales of imported light vehicles again fell more moderately, by 1.0% to 3.93 million, after May's 0.7% decline.

Sales of imported autos rose 1.8% following a 3.8% May gain. So far this year sales of imported cars are up 7.7%. Conversely, sales of imported light trucks also felt the effect from higher gasoline prices and fell 7.3%; off 25.5% since December.

Import's share of the U.S. light vehicle market rose again to another record level of 28.9%. (Imported vehicles are those produced outside the U.S. and does not include vehicles with the nameplate of a foreign manufacturer produced within the U.S.) Imports' share of the U.S. car market rose to a record 37.3% but import's share of the light truck market slipped from the prior month's record to 18.4%.

Light Vehicle Sales (SAAR, Mil. Units) June May Y/Y 2007 2006 2005
Total 13.64 14.30 -13.1% 16.17 16.54 16.96
  Autos 7.53 7.98 -1.3% 7.58 7.77 7.65
    Domestic 4.72 5.22 -7.0% 5.07 5.31 5.40
    Imported 2.81 2.76 10.0% 2.51 2.45 2.25
  Light Trucks 6.11 6.32 -24.3% 8.60 8.78 9.32
    Domestic 4.98 5.11 -24.6% 7.12 7.42 8.12
    Imported 1.13 1.21 -22.8% 1.48 1.37 1.20
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