Bubble in Motor Vehicle Inventories? Precise Normalness!

MishTalk

Auto sales numbers have been poor, but the Commerce Department durable goods report says motor vehicles and parts shipments and orders are up.

In a separate report on inventories, the Commerce Department says that for May, the unadjusted retail motor vehicles inventory was -1.0%. However, the seasonally-adjusted inventory number was +1.1%. This is a 2.1 percentage point difference between the adjusted and unadjusted numbers.

Inquiring minds may be wondering if this seasonal adjustment is normal and whether or not there is a bubble in auto inventories.

Let’s address the questions with a look at charts and tables I created from a Census Data Download.

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