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From The COX Newsroom


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Welcome to From the Newsroom, a roundup of news from Cox Automotive and perspectives from its analysts and experts on topics dominating the automotive industry.

Cheers to 2023! It’s Sales Day, and we are getting an early idea of how new-vehicle sales fared for December and full-year 2022. “It’s looking like December was not a strong month for new retail vehicle sales,” said Cox Automotive Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke. “But overall, the month was fairly stable, and we certainly did not see a collapse in total retail demand.” See the commentary published this afternoon for details on how the major automakers performed.

This newsletter highlights Smoke’s first Auto Market Report video of the year. In addition to our regular updates, we are beginning to report average auto loan rates for both new and used vehicles on Dealertrack, and these data points will be added to the Auto Market Snapshot for 2023.
 
In case you missed them before the holidays, check out Cox Automotive’s 10 predictions for 2023 and the latest article from Brian Finkelmeyer, senior director of new-vehicle solutions at Cox Automotive:
Who Will Blink First in 2023? Plus, there’s a lot of buzz about loan defaults and repossessions, so Smoke provides his thoughts on that topic.
 
We are starting 2023 fast with two events to kick off the year. Register to attend the Manheim Used Vehicle Value Index Call on Monday, Jan. 9, and the Cox Automotive Industry Insights and Forecast Call on Thursday, Jan. 12.
 
Happy New Year from the Cox Automotive team!

U.S. AUTO SALES: 2022 FINISHES DOWN, GENERAL MOTORS RECLAIMS TOP SPOT, HONDA AND NISSAN FALL SIGNIFICANTLY

While sales in December likely came in slightly higher than the initial Cox Automotive December U.S auto sales forecast, and above year-ago levels, the bottom-line result will hardly be cheered as a success. In fact, December sales continue to demonstrate a softening of retail demand, although demand has not collapsed. 
 
From reports published today, General Motors did enough to reclaim its long-held status as #1 in U.S. sales. The Big Three from Japan – Honda, Nissan and Toyota – struggled with inventory and demand challenges and lost notable share in 2022; for Honda and Nissan, 2022 was a year to forget. 


Read the commentary published this afternoon to learn more details on how the major automakers performed.

CONSUMER SPENDING ON VEHICLES INCREASES YEAR OVER YEAR AS INTEREST RATES RISE

In his latest Auto Market Report, Cox Automotive Chief Economist notes the consumer did not stop spending in 2022. Credit and debit card spending was up 22% year over year, while spending on vehicles was up a robust 19%, according to the latest data reported by Verisk.
 
However, consumers are not seeing much enticement to buy, with the share of new-vehicle transactions featuring a 0% annual percentage rate dropping to a pandemic low of 4.7% in December and the volume weighted average new auto loan rate on Dealertrack in December increasing another 7 basis points to 8.02%.

 
Read the Auto Market Weekly Summary and watch the Auto Market Report video for more data and insights from Smoke on new and used retail sales and inventory, auto financing and Cox Automotive leading indicators.

DON'T PANIC: LOAN DEFAULTS AND REPOSSESSIONS ARE RISING, AND THAT'S NORMAL

As new data become available, sometimes it’s hard to see the forest for the trees. When there are marked changes in metrics like consumer credit and auto loan performance, sometimes a reminder about context is important to keep from jumping to false conclusions.
 
After several inquiries about increases in loan default and repossessions, Cox Automotive Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke decided it was time to keep people from pressing the panic button.

 
Read Smoke
s latest article to learn why data tracking back toward historical norms shouldn’t cause alarm.

AND THE COX AUTOMOTIVE CRYSTAL BALL SAYS...

If you missed them as you wrapped up the year, the Cox Automotive Industry Insights team published its expectations for the U.S. automotive market in 2023.
 
“2022 was challenging not only to forecast but for the industry to manage,” said Cox Automotive Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke. “As we enter 2023, we see one set of challenges being replaced by another. We expect the year ahead to be one of transition, as both the consumer and the industry move past the remnants of a global pandemic and set a new course for mid-decade growth.”

 
Check out the 10 predictions for 2023. Bonus reading: Who Will Blink First in 2023?, the latest article from Brian Finkelmeyer, senior director of new-vehicle solutions at Cox Automotive.

KICK OFF 2023 WTH FRESH DATA AND INSIGHTS

Monday, Jan. 9, 2023, 11 a.m. EST
Attend the Q4 2022 Manheim Used Vehicle Value Index Call to learn about the latest Manheim Used Vehicle Value Index and the major economic and industry trends that shaped the quarter. To kick off the new year, special guest Grace Huang, president of the inventory solutions group at Cox Automotive, will provide an update on Manheim’s business. Register to attend.


Thursday, Jan. 12, 2023, at 11 a.m. EST
Attend the 2023 Cox Automotive Industry Insights and Forecast Call to hear Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke and the Industry Insights team recap how 2022 ended for the new, used and wholesale auto markets and discuss 2023 forecasts, predictions and trends. Register to attend.

AUTO QUOTE

“As the market closes out 2022 and we look to the year ahead, there is little reason to believe retail vehicle sales will increase in any meaningful way. With high auto loan rates in place and inflationary pressures on American consumers, vehicle affordability will continue to put downward pressure on the U.S. auto market.”

– Charlie Chesbrough, senior economist, Cox Automotive
 
 

Copyright 1996– The Auto Channel.

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