US auto sales to drop around 6% in May image

After a steady solid pace of the US auto market, May will likely bring the first drop in year-over-year figures for 2016, according to Kelley Blue Book.

While the demand for new cars in the United States is still strong, the pace is not growing though. Therefore, in conjunction with two fewer selling days, they are expected to decrease 6 percent year-over-year to a total of 1.53 million units in May, Kelley Blue Book said. This outcome will thus bring the seasonally adjusted annual rate to an estimated 17.4 million units, down from 17.6 million in May 2015 and up from 17.3 million in April 2016. “While this year may not bring the growth the industry has become accustomed to, it is important to remember that sales are still at record levels and economic factors point to continued strength in the near future,” Tim Fleming, analyst for Kelley Blue Book, said.

General Motors is likely to report one of the largest sales declines of all major manufacturers this month, as the automaker keeps focusing on cutting on rental fleets. By contrast, Nissan North America could see the greatest gain in market share this month, with its monthly sales figures to stay below par, mainly helped by the redesigned luxury Maxima sedan and Murano crossover.

After the highest US sales total in 2015, Kelley Blue Book’s 2016 forecast calls for sales in the range of 17.5 to 18 million, which could result either in a flat year or another record for the automotive industry. LMC Automotive also lowered its full-year sales expectations by 100,000 vehicles to 17.7 million.