"We believe a continued weak European economy, a mixed Chinese economy and a decline in miles driven from a year ago are the primary reasons for generally disappointing yet overall improving confidence among aftermarket leaders in their business and the economy."
There was a 0.13-percent increase in April to May 2013 miles driven, he said, which "gives us some pause for optimism," however "the historically higher than average gasoline prices give us reason for concern in the economy and aftermarket at this time, yet gasoline prices declined again in July 2013."
He said there has been a negative trend with regard to the national debt and that of Europe was worsened by "mixed U.S. fundamentals in July and a lower than expected second quarter 2013 U.S. GDP report showing GDP growth of 1.7 percent."
The most recent miles driven data show a slight increase in miles driven from April to May 2013, Mr. Nash said, and also shows a decline in miles driven in May 2012 relative to May 2013.
"A positive resolution to the 'sequestration debate' in Washington D.C. and 'debt crisis' around the globe," he continued, "and the adoption of a rational and predictable tax policy in the U.S. would help to offset high world oil prices and enhance aftermarket business confidence in the coming months."
The 31st installment of the survey was sent to members Aug. 10. Results will be calculated monthly and reported in AAIA SmartBrief. Member responses will be used solely in the aggregate and for the purpose of providing empirical information, the association said.
The indices are prepared monthly by Mr. Nash and Northwood University aftermarket major Matt Fusco.
For more information, contact AAIA market intelligence at 301-654-6664 or Dr. Nash at 989-837-4323.