Russian light-vehicle market posts nearly 7 percent decline in May 2019
The Russian light-vehicle market posted a significant 6.7% year-on-year (y/y) decline in sales during May to a figure of 137,624 units, according to the latest data from the Association of European Businesses (AEB). This result dragged the year-to-date (YTD) figure well into negative territory, with a 2.2% y/y decline for the first five months of the year down to 677,570 units. May's figures could prove to be something of a harbinger for the market as there was no particular external factor for the poor performance such as a calendar effect comparison, other than unseasonably warm weather, according to the head of AEB's vehicle manufacturers' committee Joerg Schreiber. He said, "No good news from the automotive market in May, instead a nearly 7% drop in sales volume - the most noticeable year-on-year loss in over 2 years. Of course, it could be said that the extraordinary warm weather this year is not helping retail sales as many people spend more time than usual away from the big cities and their shopping malls. The main reason of the current trend however remains a weaker retail demand, driven by macroeconomic factors such as rising household costs in the wake of the VAT increase earlier this year. Specifically automotive, we have a market that is still digesting a substantial reduction in government subsidies stimulating retail purchases in the past. We will have to see how these factors play out over time, but for now we are looking at a rather challenging environment."
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