We all know that the United States is the largest auto market in North America. Nowadays General Motors (GM), Ford Motor (F), and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCAU) are mainstream automakers that are highly dependent on the US market. This is because their largest chunk of revenues comes from the US. To make the things clear, let's take a closer look at the US auto sales data for August.
The latest car sales data shows that total auto sales (VCR) in the US stood at ~1.51 million vehicle units that is about 4% lower than the US auto sales of 1.56 million vehicle units in August 2015. In July 2016, auto sales stood at 1.514 million in the US. The US auto industry has witnessed good times in the past couple of years. In 2015, US auto sales were at their highest, with 17.4 million vehicles sold during the year. This certainly boosted the confidence of these automakers. However, it also ignited a debate about US auto sales being at peak levels and a possible downturn in the US auto demand going forward. So far in 2016 (until August), US auto sales figures are at 11.6 million vehicles.
Among others, Japanese automakers such as Honda (HMC) and Toyota (TM) also has good exposure to the US auto market. Auto sales are also considered a leading indicator for a country’s economy. Therefore, any slowdown in US auto sales is likely to indicate diminishing consumer confidence and weakening US economy.