This month’s Market Review looks into the Commercial Vehicles market as an indicator of economic health. Check out the Barometer below and read the Market Review: “Look South Old World” to learn more.

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Look South Old World

It could be argued that commercial vehicles are good indicators of the state of the economy. After all, the trucks segment of this market is involved in the movement of goods and, therefore, is a measure of industrial output and commerce. In many countries, the passenger service element reflects the amount of local and central government spending, while light vehicles registrations gives an indicator of the trades and small businesses.

This market responded quickly to the downturn; CVs represent a major capital outlay to be avoided in an uncertain economic environment. Already some markets were responding when GDP grew by a mere 0.4% in 2008. But the crunch year was 2009, when, of the featured countries, only India and Brazil escaped market contraction and, even here, the formidable double digit growth of the former slumped well into single figures, but still ended up with a CAGR of over 19%.

Indonesia shows great sensitivity to economic conditions, with sales plummeting by almost a third in 2009, only to more than recover ground subsequently.  Indeed, the country displays the greatest CAGR, although admittedly from a low base.

In 2010 most countries returned to growth even though this was luke warm in Australia. Thus was not the case in Mexico, however; and for Spain, the considerable growth in that year was not enough to give it the dubious honour of showing the greatest fall in its CAGR over the review period.

If commercial vehicles are the harbingers of things to come, then this analysis confirms that the developing countries do offer the main hope for European and North American economies to escape their economic troubles.

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