Look for disappointing August sales figures next week, but try not to worry too much – September will likely be dynamite.
SAAR, in case you're not aware, stands for Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate, and what it basically refers to, in this case, is the total number of automobiles experts predict automakers will sell in the United States in the 2014 calendar year. The big news is that the SAAR has been adjusted upward again, reaching the 17-million-unit level for the first time since July of 2006.
The 16-day government shutdown that dominated newscasts and headlines for the first half of October doesn't look to have had a dramatic impact on monthly sales, according to separately filed reports by Kelley Blue Book and JD Power. The news is even more welcomed following September's sales, which saw the first year-over-year decline in 27 months.
August sales will be announced next week, but early numbers say that it has been an exceptionally good month for new-car sales so far with two days left to go – including the kickoff to Labor Day weekend. Automotive News is reporting that forecasters are expecting this month to be the strongest single month since 2006 with retail sales projected to be around 1.27 million units.
The effects of Hurricane Sandy are expected to ripple across the auto industry. In the short term, the superstorm is expected to hurt October sales figures, as dealerships across the Eastern Seaboard missed several days of sales. But in the months ahead, analysts expect the storm to boost an already-burgeoning industry as Sandy's victims replace damaged vehicles.