Venezuela: Freefall in car sales continues in April
May 9, 2014
Car sales continued to plummet in April with sales plunging 89.8% over the same month last year and reaching just 1,297 units according to figures from the Venezuelan Automotive Chamber (CAVENEZ, Camara Automotriz de Venezuela). The reading followed the 86.1% decline recorded in March.
In the 12 months up to April, car sales reached just 64,985 units, which was 48.3% lower than the level observed in the same period last year (March: -37.8% year-on-year) and marked the lowest level since December 2003. Car sales currently total just a fraction of the 491,899-unit peak recorded in the full year 2007. Extreme supply shortages due to government restrictions on both assembly plants and importers have severely hampered sales of vehicles in recent years.
Given the limited availability of timely data for the real sector, analysts often use car sales as a proxy for private consumption. LatinFocus Consensus Forecast panelists expect private consumption to decline 0.4% this year, which is unchanged from the previous month's estimate. In 2015 the panel sees private consumption growth at 2.6%.