All segments showed sharp wholesale shipment declines in June, down 31.9% in year-over-year comparisons as reported by the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA).
Overall June shipments totaled 23,500 units compared with 34,500 in 2007. For the six months, deliveries fell 17.1% to 162,500 units from 196,000 a year ago.
Analysts see the downturn remaining in play into next year, as economic variables continue to stifle discretionary spending.
“Lower shipments reflect reduced industry capacity and reduced dealer orders amid falling retail demand and an uncertain outlook,” said Craig Kennison, analyst for Robert W. Baird and Co., in a note to investors.
Kathryn Thompson with Avondale Partners LLC noted: “While lower interest rates are a potential positive, continued declines in consumer confidence, volatile gas prices and an overall tough economy have both customers and dealers reticent to make any purchases at either the retail or wholesale level. As we have outlined in our recent industry notes, we believe this current downturn could now surpass the early ’90’s 28-month downturn.
June travel trailer shipments fell 24.1%, perhaps reflecting that market is also feeling the effects of inventory reduction at the retail level. “June trends are consistent with our recent survey and our view is that a dealer inventory correction is needed across most categories as demand remains weak and dealers aim to increase turns,” said Kennison.
For the month, trailer deliveries were 13,200 units versus 17,400 the year prior while shipments fell 12.9% to 86,800 units from 99,700 for the six months.
The Class A wholesale market showed no signs of recovery in June, dropping 56.3% to 1,400 units shipped from 3,200 last year. Through the second quarter, deliveries fell 42.5% with to 10,300 units from 17,900.
Other highlights from the report include:
• Overall June towable shipments decreased 27.4% to 20,900 units from 28,800 in 2007 and the motorized sector declined 54.4% to 2,600 units compared with 5,700. Year-to-date, towable deliveries dropped 14.1% to 142,200 units from 165,600 a year ago while motorized deliveries declined 33.2% to 20,300 units versus 30,400.
• June Class C shipments were down 54.5% with 1,000 units delivered compared with 2,200 in 2007. Year-to-date the sector dropped 18.7% to 8,700 units from 10,700.
• For the month, fifth-wheel shipments fell 28.6% to 5,500 units from 7,700 in 2007. For the six months, the segment was down 13.2% with 38,700 units shipped compared with 44,600 the previous year.
• Class B deliveries were down 100 units to 200 in June and year-to-date dropped 500 units, or 27.8%, to 1,300.
• June folding camping trailer shipments declined 40% to 1,800 units from 3,000 a year ago and were down 21.5% for the six months with 13,500 units shipped versus 17,200.
• Truck camper shipments fell 300 units to 400 in June and declined 900 units, or 22%, to 3,200 year-to-date.