Schwab the Deck; Black October on Its Way

One of TTAC’s Best and Brightest sent us this little ditty from Credit Suisse re: U.S. new car sales for October. Needless to say, it’s a jug full of that sucks.

• We expect the October annualized light vehicle selling rate (SAAR) to land in a range of 11.5 – 11.8 million vehicles, the midpoint of which would be about 27% below the year-ago month pace of 16.0 million, and about 7% below last month’s pace of 12.5 million.

• We expect October unit volume (selling day adjusted) to be down in a range of 27% – 29% versus October 2007. The seasonal factors are slightly favorable this month (about 1%), which explains why our projected decline in the SAAR is not quite as deep as our projected decline in volume.

• We look for a modest decline in the truck mix in October, to about 49% from north of 50% in September, as much of the excess truck inventory has been cleared as automakers have cut production schedules and thrown big incentives at pickups, SUVs, and minivans.

• By maker, we see GM sales down in a range of 32% – 34% in October. Market share should suffer sequentially as GM experiences payback from its “employee discount for everyone” program that ran in August and September. We expect share of around 23%, down from 29% in September and 25% in the year-ago month.

• We look for Ford sales to tumble 33% – 35% in October, with market share bouncing to around 13.5%, up from about 12% in September (getting a boost as GM’s share comes back to earth), but down from nearly 15% in the year-ago month.

• We expect Chrysler sales to fall in a range of 32% – 34% in October, with market share coming in around 11%, down slightly from last month, and down about 80 basis points versus the year-ago month.

• Foreign brand sales should fall sharply in October as well, but will be supported by a 0% financing program at Toyota. We expect large sequential share gains for the foreign brands, to north of 52% from just under 48% in September.

• Assuming our sales forecasts are roughly correct for the month, we think inventories are likely to end October more overstocked than they were in September.

• Note that our year-end inventory forecast calls for overall improvement in dealer stocks between the end of Q3 and the end of Q4. But our year-end base case assumed a 13.0 million unit Q4 selling rate. To the extent the selling rate runs closer to 11 million units, fourth quarter production schedules at GM and Ford could be subject to further downward revision.


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  • 50merc 50merc on Oct 28, 2008

    "we think inventories are likely to end October more overstocked than they were in September" It's time for a "pay what our CEO's pay for the cars we give them!" sale.

  • Jeremy cohn Jeremy cohn on Oct 28, 2008
    Foreign brand sales should fall sharply in October as well, but will be supported by a 0% financing program at Toyota. We expect large sequential share gains for the foreign brands, to north of 52% from just under 48% in September. saaaaaaved by zerooooo.

  • EBFlex What a colossal waste of money. But this installed administration has yet to spend one cent on something that is actually useful and actually leads to some progress. But apparently this is just what we need….a bunch of extremely overpriced but short ranged busses. It’s amazing that all our problems are solved that they have time to waste money on these little pet projects.
  • Hector How much for steering column?
  • John S. Beautiful car, fun series installment, Corey.
  • FreedMike Any link to the grant applications that were denied?
  • FreedMike I'm amazed it took this long for them to do a Challenger convertible.
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