Sales Performance Summary – Total by Market Segment (NAAMSA flash includes Namibia, Lesotho, Swaziland & Botswana):
Sales Performance Summary – Exports:
Sales Performance Summary – AMH:
General Comments on April 2013 NAAMSA sales:
- The month of May 2013 experienced 5.98% more sales than April 2013.
- Year on Year comparison shows an increase of 7.46% in May 2013 compared to May of 2012. Importantly, the average sales per day in May 2013 (2,077) outsold May 2012 (1,933).
- Year to Date (January – May 2013) comparison indicates a growth of 7.49% in 2013 compared to the same period last year. This equates to 18,682 more vehicles sold for the first five (5 months) of 2013 compared to 2012.
- The main contributors to this year’s growth are Passenger & Light Commercial Vehicles, with growth of 5.89% and 12.15% respectively. Year to Date Medium, Heavy and Extra Heavy Commercial vehicles all experienced above 6% growth. Only Busses had negative growth but this was in small volumes.
- The average number of sales for May since 2010 has been 43,425 (excl May 2013) and on average May has ranked as the 10th best month since 2007. May 2013 has in fact surpassed the average number of sales, (53,997 to 43,425), and has ranked 12th best out the last 77 months.
General Macro and Industry Comments:
- GDP growth for Q1 of 2013 was lower than expected at 0.9%. The SARB has revised down the annual GDP forecasts from 2.7% to 2.4% for 2013 on the back of slow economic growth whilst the Standard Bank Research team has revised its projection of downward to 2.3%.
- The headline CPI rate in April 2013 was 5.9%. Food inflation had been moderating, however due to the weaker Rand this has been passed on into prices. International wheat prices are rising and we could see this increase reflect in CPI in the months to come. Inflation is expected to hit 6.3% in July and regress within the target range in September (Standard Bank Research).
- The rand has been depreciating against major currencies for some time but has come under immense pressure this past month with the rand hitting a 4 year low of R10.00 against the Dollar. Wage negotiations are expected to play their part in increasing the currency risk premium due to the associated negative impact of strike action on productivity.
- The exchange rate will impact the vehicle market through Vehicle Price Inflation and indirectly through the fuel price fluctuations.
- Unemployment in the country remains rife, with the unemployment rate increasing to 25.2% in Q1 of 2013. This was up from Q4 of 2012 of 24.9%. 70% of the unemployed are under 35, and 50% of those under 25 are without jobs (Standard Bank Research).
- NCR Consumer Credit Report for Q4 of 2012 reported that there has been a 1.4% increase of credit-active consumers to 19.97 million from 19.67 million in the previous quarter.
- Consumers are still under pressure despite a low-interest rate environment, deleveraging of household debt has been minimal, with the household indebtedness ratio of 75.8% in Q4 2012 the South African consumer cannot afford to save.
Comments on Vehicle Sales Outlook:
- Vehicle sales volumes may still be boosted by the following factors:
- The Prime Interest Rate remains at its lowest for over thirty years, and will continue to play a major part maintaining the South African consumer’s appetite for debt.
- The SARB is likely to keep rates flat for 2013. With a potential cut of 0.5 bps in Q1 of 2014 to stimulate economic growth (Standard Bank Research).
- Private sector credit growth was up by 9.13% year on year in April. The Corporate sector showed resilient growth year on year at 8.7%. Thus indicating there is still an appetite for credit in the market.
- Although the rand has been under pressure against all major currencies and will have a negative knock-on effect on Vehicle Price Inflation (VPI), the VPI for Q1 of 2013 has so far remained below CPI.
- VPI for Q1 of 2013 for new car prices is at 2.4%. This is up from Q4 of 2012 by 0.2% and up from 2012 annual 2.2%.
- VPI on Used cars has in contrast decreased Quarter on Quarter. Q1 of 2013 is at -1.4% compared to Q4 of 2012’s 3.6% and 2012’s annual 2.2%.
- It seems that manufacturers have placed sufficient orders in the system to create stock availability for the year that is likely to lead to a very competitive sales environment for the remainder of 2013. This is likely to increase marketing and incentive programmes that will entice market demand.
- The following factors are expected to provide subduing effects on vehicle sales numbers:
- The expected low GDP growth projected at 2.4% by the Reserve Bank, and 2.3% by the Standard Bank Research team.
- Increases in food, energy and transport costs (including toll fees) will impact on consumer disposable income.
- Household Debt to Disposal Income remains high at 75.8% (Q4 of 2012).
- Caution need be observed when considering that the exchange rate will have knock on effect in terms of VPI as the majority of vehicles are imported in the country.
- The Rand’s weakness will also transfer onto both Vehicle Prices and energy costs (in particularly fuel prices). Fuel prices have risen by 7.8% in petrol (inland) and 11% in diesel (inland) since Jan 2012 (Jan 2012 to May 2013). Further, the price of fuel in the country has gone up by 210.5% and 354% in petrol and diesel respectively since 2001.
- Carbon Emissions tax increases have come into effect as of April 2013.
Some statistics on Standard Bank related numbers:
- For the period January to April 2013 Standard Bank experienced growth of 16.9% in applications compared to the same period in 2012.
- The average contracted original settlement term per deal is 56 months (59 months for Personal customers, and 53 months for Commercial/Business customers). The actual settlement term per deal is 44 months (44 months for Personal and 43 months for Business Customers).
- Applications with RVs requested represent 14% of all applications. However, applications approved with RV’s represent 5% of total applications.
- Applications with deposits requested represent 32% of all applications. However, applications approved with deposits represent 14% of total applications.
Standard Bank Vehicle and Asset Finance Age Demographics:
- In April 2012, the Youth Market in the age range of 18 to 24 years made up 1.3% of the total number of customers financed by Standard Bank Vehicle and Asset Finance. This has doubled to 2.6% of total customers financed in 2013.
- The age ranges of between 18 to 24 years and 25 to 35 years were the only two age groups that grew year on year from April 2012 to April 2013.
- In April 2012 the age group from 18 to 40 made up 44.6% of deals, this has grown by 6.5% in April 2013 to 47.5%. The age group from 41 and above has decreased by -5.2% in April 2013.
- The shift in the buying trends in the younger age groups can be attributed to growth of the young professionals, and the associated growth of the Black Middle Class. Whereas in 2012 Blacks made up 44.7% of the age group between 18 to 40 years, the Black contribution grew to 46.0% in 2013.
- The increase in vehicle ownership by the youth has also been encouraged by the introduction of smaller and affordable cars in the market.
Comments by Sydney Soundy – Head of Standard Bank Vehicle Asset Finance