By on August 2, 2012


They called the market correctly, but they did bet on the wrong horses. Bloomberg polled the usual  assemblage of analysts regarding the final tally of July new car sales, and the analysts did not disappoint  when it came to the overall market. On average, they nailed the July SAAR of 14.1 million. When it came to the Detroit 3, they were way too optimistic. And it just so happens that the chief car analyst of Germany’s largest bank is the winner of this month’s Grade the Analysts.

July Grade the Analysts

Rank Analyst  GM Ford  Chrysler  SAAR SAAR Diff OEM Diff Overall
1 Rod Lache (Deutsche Bank) -0.9% -0.2% 14.0% 14.0 0.6% 10.5% 11.1%
2 Jessica Caldwell ( -0.3% -2.5% 9.2% 14.0 0.6% 10.7% 11.3%
3 Joseph Spak (RBC) 1.5% 0.3% 14.0% 14.0 0.6% 13.4% 14.0%
4 Emmanuel Rosner (CLSA) -0.4% 1.1% 11.0% 14.3 1.6% 12.4% 14.0%
5 Chris Ceraso (Credit Suisse) 0.5% 1.2% 13.0% 13.8 2.0% 12.3% 14.3%
6 Jesse Toprak ( 0.3% -1.1% 18.0% 14.1 0.1% 14.8% 14.9%
7 Alec Gutierrez (Kelley) 1.5% -0.3% 16.0% 14.0 0.6% 14.8% 15.4%
8 Brian Johnson (Barclays) -0.8% 1.8% 16.0% 14.2 0.9% 14.6% 15.5%
9 John Sousanis (Ward’s) 8.2% -3.0% 8.4% 14.1 0.1% 19.5% 19.6%
10 Peter Nesvold (Jefferies) 8.9% 5.3% 18.0% 14.1 0.1% 29.8% 29.9%
11 Patrick Archambault (Goldman) 4.9% 6.1% NA 14.0 0.6% 121.2% 121.7%
12 George Magliano (IHS) NA NA NA 14.1 0.1% 300.0% 300.1%
13 Jeff Schuster (LMC Automotive) NA NA NA 14.1 0.1% 300.0% 300.1%
14 Alan Baum (Baum & Associates) NA NA NA 14.1 0.1% 300.0% 300.1%
15 Ryan Brinkman (JPMorgan) NA NA NA 13.9 1.3% 300.0% 301.3%
Average 2.1% 0.8% 14.0% 14.1
Actual -6.4% -3.8% 12.6% 14.1

Rod Lache of Deutsche Bank made first place, powered by a good dose of healthy pessimism when it came  to GM and Ford. A bigger dose of pessimism would have put Rod closer to the actual numbers. But To win, you don’t have to be right, you only have to be better than the rest of the field. And the field was WAY to optimistic.

Those in possession of real time data failed with Jesse Toprak of TrueCar in place six, and Alec  Gutierrez of Kelley Blue Book in place 7. Trophy analyst Jessica Caldwell takes an honorable close second.

When Ed Niedermeyer and I visited Edmunds and TrueCar last May, both of them confirmed that they could call the month with high precision based on the real time data collected from dealers – what throws them off is fleet sales. Those they have to guess, and they guessed too high.

P.S.: We applaud the growing number of analysts that doe more than just throw out a SAAR. That won’t get you far with your clients, and at TTAC.  Remember: Guesses for all Detroit 3 have to be in it to win it.

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