March premieres the new Market Beat. While the look is different—with fewer words and bolder, more user-friendly graphics—all the major industry trends are here.
Industry watchers, ourselves included, were pleasantly surprised by the jump in March auto sales to 17.05 million *SAAR (seasonally adjusted annual rate). Clearly, pent-up demand needed to be unleashed after all the wicked weather in February. As for Q1 overall, the economy was clearly a bit rocky, with employment growth weakening substantially, but strong fundamentals persist: low interest rates, a solid housing market and strong sales.
* SAAR (Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate) is a term used in the industry to depict the selling rate of vehicles for a particular month. For example, a SAAR rate of 16 million for a particular month indicates that the industry was on pace to sell 16 million vehicles on an annual basis.
- February 2015
- There were 1.3 million light-vehicle sales in February 2015 across the U.S. Monthly sales were up 9.3 percent from January 2015 and up 5.4 percent from February 2014.
- January 2015
- There were 1.1 million light-vehicle sales in January 2015 in the United States, down 23.5 percent from December 2014 but up 13.7 percent from January 2014.
- December 2014
- There were 1.5 million light-vehicle sales across the U.S. in December 2014, up 15.7 percent from November 2014 and up 10.7 percent from December 2013.
- In November, there were 1.3 million light-vehicle sales, up 1.6 percent from October and up 4.5 percent from November 2013.
- There were 1.3 million light-vehicle sales in October 2014, up 2.8 percent from September 2014 and up 6 percent from October 2013.
- There were 1.2 million light-vehicle sales in September, down 21.5 percent from August, which has been one of the two highest sales months so far this year.
- There were 1.6 million light-vehicle sales in August 2014, up 10.5 percent from July 2014 and up 5.4 percent from August 2013.
- There were 1.4 million light-vehicle sales in July, down 1 percent from June but up 9.1 percent from July 2013.
- There were 1.4 million light-vehicle sales in June 2014, down 11.7 percent from May 2014, but up 1.1 percent from June 2013.
- There were 1.6 million light-vehicle sales in May 2014 – an increase of 15.8 percent from April 2014 and an increase of 11.2 percent over May 2013.
- There were 1.4 million light-vehicle sales in April 2014, a 9.6 percent decline in sales from last month but an 8.0 percent increase over April 2013.
- The SAAR* for March was 16.3 million, the first month of the year that the projected annual sales rate for light vehicles surpassed 16 million.
- The abnormally cold weather and heavy snow continued to dampen sales in February.
- There were 1 million light-vehicle sales in the U.S. in January 2014, down 25.5 percent from December 2013 and down 3.0 percent from January 2013.