What’s the most important US economic data which will get revealed next week? Of course that’s U.S. auto sales for the third month of the this year. That’s how we will release what really consumers are up to, and if the stock market had a rough ride in 2017. What do we expect?
Specialists say we must wait for another solid month of sales of 17 million new cars at a seasonally adjusted rate for March, but nothing like those 18.4 million we got in December. The number would however point to a third consecutive decline on a 12-month rolling basis. With sales peaking and prices set to drop, the secondary effects are expected to be felt beyond car makers and dealers. Lease and used-vehicle prices are expected to fall sharply this year, which cited its estimate earlier this month when it lowered its 2017 profit forecast.
With the market tightening, industry insiders expect more price cuts. At the same time, competition to finance loans is likely to further increase credit risk for auto lenders. However, and taking into account all the moving parts of the industry's supply chain, a halt in the auto sector could strain an economy that is already eight years into a recovery cycle. And it would hurt blue-collar workers the most.