The final motor vehicles numbers for March are now in.

First Quarter GDP estimates will dive as sales were far below the lowest estimate.

The Econoday consensus estimate was 14.4 million, seasonally adjusted, annualized, in a range of 17.2 million to 17.8 million. Reported sales total 16.6 million, down 5.7%.

First-quarter GDP will take another hit, this time from March vehicle sales which like February and January proved weak. But the March data is unusually weak, down 5.7 in the month to a 16.6 million annualized rate that is a 2-year low. Sales of North American-made and imports both suffered, at 13.3 and 3.4 million rates, with light trucks and autos both down. Vehicle sales seem to have been pulled forward into December which was an unusually strong month and which helped the fourth quarter at the expense of the first quarter.

Don’t Worry, It’s Just a Plateau!

The amusing comment of the day comes from the Ford Chief Economist, via the Wall Street Journal.

“We think the industry is plateauing at some levels,” Ford Chief Economist Emily Kolinski Morris said. “We’re getting into a more normal phase where (industry sales are) not entirely driven by replacement demand.”

Another Plateau Opinion

I side with Stockman.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock