According to ACT Research’s (ACT) latest State of the Industry: NA Classes 5-8 report, December Class 8 net orders were healthy, bringing total year-end ordering activity to a strong 159k (Sep-Dec). Classes 5-7 orders declined 3% y/y to 17,464 units (-21% m/m), with seasonal adjustment trimming orders to 16,100.
ACT’s State of the Industry: NA Classes 5-8 report provides a monthly look at the current production, sales, and general state of the on-road heavy and medium duty commercial vehicle markets in North America. It differentiates market indicators by Class 5, Classes 6-7 chassis and Class 8 trucks and tractors, detailing measures such as backlog, build, inventory, new orders, cancellations, net orders, and retail sales. Additionally, Class 5 and Classes 6-7 are segmented by trucks, buses, RVs, and step van configurations, while Class 8 is segmented by trucks and tractors with and without sleeper cabs. This report includes a six-month industry build plan, backlog timing analysis, historical data from 1996 to the present in spreadsheet format, and a ready-to-use graph package. A first-look at preliminary net orders is also published in conjunction with this report.
According to Eric Crawford, ACT Research’s Vice President, Senior Analyst, “For now, business activity in the truck industry rolls on, also seemingly unphased by higher interest rates, as pent-up demand remains for now.” He continued, “We expect this dynamic to shift in 2H’23, as the Fed continues its aggressive push to subdue inflation. Although there have been recent signs of inflation slowing, we do not expect the Fed to begin cutting rates in 2023.”
Regarding retail sales, Crawford added, “Class 8 retail sales in December rose 19% y/y to an all-time record 34,415 units. The strong finish to the year led to a total of 309,615 units sold in 2022.” He concluded, “Classes 5-7 retail sales (SA) rose 3.6% y/y to 19,000 units. Full year retail sales were 229,821.”
ACT Research is recognized as the leading publisher of commercial vehicle truck, trailer, and bus industry data, market analysis and forecasts for the North America and China markets. ACT’s analytical services are used by all major North American truck and trailer manufacturers and their suppliers, as well as banking and investment companies. ACT Research is a contributor to the Blue Chip Economic Indicators and a member of the Wall Street Journal Economic Forecast Panel. ACT Research executives have received peer recognition, including election to the Board of Directors of the National Association for Business Economics, appointment as Consulting Economist to the National Private Truck Council, and the Lawrence R. Klein Award for Blue Chip Economic Indicators’ Most Accurate Economic Forecast over a four-year period. ACT Research senior staff members have earned accolades including Chicago Federal Reserve Automotive Outlook Symposium Best Overall Forecast, Wall Street Journal Top Economic Outlook, and USA Today Top 10 Economic Forecasters. More information can be found at www.actresearch.net.
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