Dealer Data: Retail Product Sales Forecasts
Economic and Spending Outlook
A healthy economy through 2008 could generate industry growth of 8.2% for a predicted $170 billion in sales, up from an estimated $160 billion this year. The housing market, however, could be sore point. In 2005 private investment in real estate added .5 percentage points to real GDP growth. But the reverse happened this year and last, with private investment in real estate lowering real GDP growth by .4% in 2007 and .7 % in 2006.
Personal spending will continue to drive the economy. In 2006, it grew 3.2 % over 2005. Consumer spending in fourth quarter of 2006 and first quarter of 2007 each grew at a 4.2% annual rate, which helped propel CE growth in 2006 well above the trend. Personal spending is expected to drift lower from those quarters, averaging 3.2% this year and 2.5% next.