According to Autodata Corp., sales in July of new cars and light trucks soared to 1.51 million units, higher than the average analyst forecast of 1.48 million autos.
Thus, the seasonally adjusted annualized rate also jumped from 16.5 million vehicles last year to 17.6 million units – again beating the analyst estimates averaged and compiled by Bloomberg, which called for a SAAR of 17.2 million autos. “Analysts are playing it very conservatively, and we are beginning to consistently see these automakers strongly beat estimates,” comments Michelle Krebs, an analyst with AutoTrader.com. “There are definitely some economics involved with these strong numbers, such as employment having improved. Again, the story is the same. People are going after SUVs and crossovers.” New York-traded stock of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV soared 2.2 percent, and has so far jumped 39 percent this year; GM was also slightly up by 0.5 percent and stopped its drop this year so far to 9.3 percent while Ford also modestly grew by 0.7 percent and recorded a 3.6 percent slide so far for the year.
And the prices of new autos are also reaching new frontiers, with the estimated average transaction price for light vehicles in the United States last month soaring to $33,453. That compares to last year when it was down $856 (2.6 percent) and kept the level seen last month, according to figures from Kelley Blue Book. “Transaction prices continue to climb across the industry, with some notable gains from small and medium volume brands,” analyzed the situation Karl Brauer, senior analyst for Kelley Blue Book.