indicatorThe Owl

New vehicle sales remain weak

On a year-over-year basis, sales were down by 49 per cent in May and were still off by 29 per cent as of June

By ATB Economics 17 August 2020 1 min read

When it comes to the economy in 2020, it makes sense to start with the good news: new vehicle sales in Alberta have increased since April when they reached their lowest point since November 1982.

Unadjusted sales were up by 86 per cent in June compared to April when oil prices went negative and economic restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19 were at their height.

But, while the increase indicates that more Albertans felt confident enough despite the pandemic to make a major purchase like a new vehicle, we need to keep in mind that monthly sales tend to peak around May and June every year.

Now the bad news: on a year-over-year basis, sales were down by 49 per cent in May and were still off by 29 per cent as of June.

This is another example of how things on the economic front have gotten “better,” but are still far from “good.”

The picture is the same nationally with month-over-month sales up compared to the low point reached during the lockdown, but year-over-year sales still off by 47 per cent in May and by 21 per cent in June.

New vehicle sales in Alberta were up by 86 per cent in June 2020 compared to April 2020

Sales were up by 86 per cent in June 2020 compared to April 2020


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