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Fed’s Language Suggests End to Rate Hikes

December 14, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

In raising the federal funds rate to 4.25% on Tuesday (Dec. 13), Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan and his colleagues stopped using the word “accommodation,” which in Fed-speak means that interest rates are kept low enough to boost economic growth. According to an Associated Press report, dropping “accommodation” from its policy statement suggests the Fed thinks it has raised rates so high that they are no longer stimulating economic activity. The Fed did keep another... Read more

Winnebago Reports Drop in Sales, Earnings

December 14, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

A soft Class A motorhome market, slowed by rising fuel prices, cut into profits during Winnebago Industries Inc.’s fiscal first quarter as the Forest City, Iowa, builder reported a 25% decline in earnings. Chairman and CEO Bruce Hertzke also pointed to a “shift in product mix” toward lower priced motorhomes that negatively impacted profit margins. Net income for the three-month period, ended Nov. 26, was $14.6 million compared to $19.5 million a year ago while revenues fell to $232.3... Read more

RVDA of Canada Donates to Cancer Charity

December 14, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

The Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association of Canada (RVDAC) recently presented the Childhood Cancer Foundation – Candlelighters Canada – with a $16,240 donation. The funds were raised at the association’s 2005 “Canada Night Dinner,” held during the 43rd Annual RV Trade Show in Louisville, Ky., at the Galt House hotel. RVDA of Canada reported that close to 340 industry personnel attended the Nov. 28 dinner. “I am touched by the generosity of all of those in attendance,”... Read more

Sun Valley Introduces Rattler Toy Hauler

December 14, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

Sun Valley Inc. has introduced its first sport utility towable (SURV) – the Rattler, a wood-and-aluminum travel trailer in 24- and 27-foot floorplans. “It’s entry level, but its got the nicer stuff in it – a rubber mat instead of linoleum, upgraded hinges, LED brake lights and 5,200-pound axles,” said Mark Romanetz, president of the Elkhart, Ind., towable manufacturer. “We want to stay with smaller trailers because that is where our niche is. Not a lot of people are building... Read more

Rvtripsetter.com Offers 24/7 Reservations

December 14, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

Rvtripsetter.com, a new online campground reservation system offering 24/7 service, recently launched its sign-up program. According to a press release, the service will attract new customers and fill sites that might otherwise have gone vacant by allowing RVers to book reservations around the clock. The service meets the needs of a growing number of consumers making online transactions outside of normal business hours. Rvtripsetter.com said more than 60% of these transactions are made from 7 p.m.... Read more

Hegedus Receives RV Journalism Award

December 13, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

Mike Hegedus, special features correspondent for CNBC, has received the 2005 Distinguished Achievement in RV Journalism Award.   The award is presented annually by Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) to journalists for “exemplary coverage of the RV industry before national audiences.” Hegedus was presented the award at a special ceremony Nov. 29 during the 2006 Outlook Breakfast of RVIA’s 43rd Annual National RV Trade Show in Louisville, Ky.  Hegedus has covered the show... Read more

Park Models Attracting Affluent Consumers

December 13, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

Whether they’re seasonal tenants or weekend visitors, recreational park trailer owners are becoming increasingly affluent and are more likely than ever before to purchase a unit for seasonal winter use in the Sunbelt, according to Bill Garpow, executive director of the Recreational Park Trailer Industry Association (RPTIA). Speaking to campground operators attending the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC) annual InSites Convention and Expo, Nov. 30-Dec. 3 in Austin, Texas, Garpow... Read more

RVB Poll Addresses Industry Quality Issues

December 13, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

In our most recent RVBUSINESS.com Industry Poll, we asked industry insiders their thoughts on a topic that has received a lot of lip service in recent years, but has never enjoyed the kind of attention that it has lately. And that’s quality, both in products and services. Why is the topic getting more scrutiny lately? People are frustrated by recent consumer surveys indicating the industry isn’t moving the needle with respect to quality as much as it should. And there’s a movement... Read more

Monaco Adds ‘Full Wall’ Slide to Key Lines

December 13, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

Monaco Coach Corp., Coburg, Ore., has developed 24-foot “full-wall” slideout rooms for 2006 in 38-foot versions of its Monaco Knight and Holiday Rambler Ambassador Class A diesel pusher motorhomes. “With today’s quad-slides, you’ve always got narrow hallways,” said Mike Snell, vice president of sales and marketing. “With a full-wall slide, it’s basically open throughout the coach.” Built on Monaco’s proprietary 33,000-pound GVWR, raised-rail, Roadmaster RR8R chassis powered by... Read more

Trailer Delivery to Hurricane Victims Slow

December 13, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

More than three months after Hurricane Katrina devastated thousands of homes, local and federal officials are trading blame over the slow delivery of temporary trailer housing in Louisiana, according to CNN. “We got a serious situation in St. Bernard Parish,” its president, Henry “Junior” Rodriguez, told CNN today (Dec. 13). “We got people living in tents and automobiles,” he said. “We got people living in barns. … This is the beginning of winter. This is unacceptable.” The... Read more

FEMA Trailers Not for Sale to Evacuees

December 12, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has informed Hurricane Katrina evacuees in southern Mississippi that they won’t be able to purchase the travel trailers they are using as temporary shelter. According to the Sun Herald, Gulfport, families have to move out 18 months after the date of the natural disaster, which hit the Gulf Coast region on Aug. 29. “FEMA trailers are set up as temporary housing only,” said FEMA spokesman De Carlo said. “They can be occupied for a maximum... Read more

Country Coach Expansion Remains on Hold

December 12, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

Country Coach Inc., Junction City, Ore., continues to negotiate with local officials about a proposed expansion which would allow the motorhome maker to build a new state-of-the-art facility on 74 acres adjacent to its current facility. According to a report in the Register Guard, Country Coach executives are frustrated by a situation they say has limited their growth and locked them into an inefficient production set-up. Before the company can build, it needs to convince Lane County commissioners... Read more

RVDA Establishes Retail Certifying Panel

December 12, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

The board of directors for the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA) Education Foundation Inc. established a commission to serve as the credentialing agency for RV retail positions during its Nov. 28 meeting at the 43rd Annual RV Trade Show in Louisville, Ky. RVDA said the RV Professional Certifying Commission will serve as an autonomous governing body to “develop and adopt standards and policies as necessary for the implementation of all aspects of RV retail employee certification, except... Read more

October Trailer Shipments Soar, A’s fall 29%

December 12, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

Wholesale shipments of travel trailers, which swelled by almost 5,000 units in October from a year ago, boosted industry totals to a 4.9% increase for the month despite nearly 30% declines in the Class A motorhome and fifth-wheel sectors. Travel trailer tallies did not include shipments of specialized units to the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA), which the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) has classified as Emergency Life Units (ELU). RVIA reported that 10,464 ELU trailers... Read more

Forest River Gives $17,000 to ‘Toys for Tots’

December 12, 2005 by · Leave a Comment 

For the sixth straight year, Elkhart, Ind.-based Forest River Inc. pooled donations from its employees nationwide, resulting in a contribution of just over $17,000 to the local Toys for Tots charity. Workers from the recreational vehicle maker spent the donations during a shopping spree for toys at an area store. The toys were then loaded, quite appropriately, into an RV, and delivered to a local TV station during a promotional event for the charity this past weekend. The $17,000 represented $6,000... Read more

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