Ford's Surprise Sales Gain in August Fueled by SUVs, F-Series

(Bloomberg) -- Ford Motor Co. reported a 4.1 percent increase in light-vehicle sales in August, beating the average estimate for a decline of 0.8 percent. The company’s F-Series pickups continued to be popular with consumers, while SUVs like the Expedition also provided a lift.

Key Takeaways

  • A 15 percent jump in sales to fleet customers played a big part in Ford’s better-than-expected month, but retail deliveries also rose.
  • The Mustang had a very good month with sales up more than 35 percent. That bucks the long-standing trend of sinking sales of passenger cars for Ford and its rivals.
  • Unlike trucks and SUVs, Ford’s car sales fell 21 percent in August bringing the decline for the year to 16 percent. Among the Dearborn, Michigan-based company’s biggest losers: the Fusion sedan, which saw sales plunge by more than a third last month.

Market Reaction

Ford climbed 0.5 percent to $9.53. The shares are down 24 percent this year.

Raw Numbers

Ford August U.S. light-vehicle sales rose 4.1% y/y, est. down 0.8%.
  • F-series marked 16th consecutive month of y/y gains on sales of 81,839 pickups
    • Best Aug. F-Series month since 2005
  • Fleet sales rose 15% y/y
  • Truck sales up 5.7% y/y
  • SUV sales up 20% y/y
  • Car sales fell 21% y/y
  • Lincoln Navigator sales up 102%
  • Mustang sales up 35%
  • Expedition sales rose 95%; Explorer sales up 19%

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