Editor’s Note: Robert W. Baird & Co. issued a report to investors following Monday’s distribution by Statistical Surveys Inc. of April retail sales of motorhomes. Excerpts from that report follow.
Motorhome retail down slightly in April. Retail demand trends weakened in April, with Class A registrations down 11% and Class C registrations up 1%. The weakness in April is disappointing after a stronger March, but is consistent with the general consumer weakness seen in mid-spring. Meanwhile, the robust wholesale recovery continues as demand stabilizes and dealers replenish inventory at a more normal rate.
Motorhome registrations fell in April. Class A registrations fell 11%, while Class C registrations increased 1%. While the bullwhip effect has driven strong wholesale results for several months, retail demand growth has yet to follow through. We would note, however, that April was a more difficult retail comp driven by strong rental demand in 2009.
Winnebago retail. Winnebago (WGO-$11.30-Outperform) U.S. retail registrations increased 20% in April, but are tracking up just 5% QTD (Mar-Apr) — lower than our 25% expectation for FQ3 ending in May and consistent with consumer weakness seen in mid-spring. Despite lower-than-expected retail, industry shipments remain up significantly driven by the bullwhip effect. We are slightly more cautious on Winnebago, which reports FQ3 results June 17 before market open.
Retail SAAR. The seasonally adjusted annual rate of motorhome retail registrations for April increased to 22.5K units, up from 19.1K units in March.
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