The Back to Normal Index plunged with the surge in COVID cases in the week ending December 29, and the Index of Consumer Sentiment from Morning Consult also declined.
Dealertrack data show new and used retail sales modestly gained against 2019 pre-pandemic levels in the final week of the year. Even with the improving trends, new retail sales for the full month were down 33% compared to 2019, and used retail sales were down 24%.
“Retail vehicle sales gained modest momentum in December as supplies slowly improved and increasing financing offers attracted buyers,” according to Cox Automotive Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke in his first Auto Market Report video of the year published earlier today. “But the increase wasn’t enough to see the normal number of sales, especially in the new-vehicle market, that we typically see in December as supply remains very low.”
Click here to watch the Auto Market Report for an update on key economic and Cox Automotive industry indicators.