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Retailers said car audio sales were down slightly this fall due to pre- and post-election jitters, higher gas prices and rainy weather in the Northeast.
Although sales usually dip in the fall, car audio specialists said prior to Christmas that the slowdown has been more severe this season. Bob Zinno, VP of Boomer McCloud, Newington, Conn., noted, "It's been pretty flat the last few months because of gas prices and rainy weather. It rained 45 days out of 70. But the previous part of the year was strong."
Mark Scrivner, co-owner of Santa Fe Autosound, Overland Park, Kan., added "It's always a slow time of the year now, but I think the election this year has made it slower than usual."
Analyst firm NPD Intelect, Port Washington, N.Y., said car audio specialist sales were down 4 percent in September.
Not all retailers reported a downturn. Tweeter etc., Canton, Mass., said sales were strong. And at Ovation Audio in Indianapolis, buyer Russ Cunningham noted, "I wouldn't say that sales are slower than normal but the increases are not as significant. We are feeling a little bit of a slowdown. I think it is the elections, frankly, because we noticed it specifically at the end of October."
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.