Posts Tagged ‘Wall Street Journal’

Surging Mower Sales: Good News for Powersports?

June 14, 2010

Joe Delmont

Now, that’s a good question.

If a homeowner is willing to pop for a $10,000 deluxe lawn mower, does that mean he’s likely to spend a similar amount for a motorcycle or a SxS vehicle this year? Or does it mean that the purchase of one fancy motor machine is enough for now? I don’t have the answer, but I just the fact that consumers are spending 10,000 bucks for a machine with more power and features than they need— really an unnecessary purchase— seems to bode well for our industry. It could be another positive sign of sales improvement over the next few months.

The Wall Street Journal today reports that after double digit decreases for the past two years, U.S. shipments of riding mowers are expected to climb more than six percent over the next two years. At John Deere, for example, sales are “far exceeding” forecasts, according to the story.

We’re not talking basic grass cutters here; the machines that sell have iPod compartments, chrome hub caps, comfortable seats, plenty of power and agility and sell for more than $10,000. “It goes well beyond cupholders,” notes a representative of the popular Cub Cadet brand.

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Two More Pieces of Positive News

May 3, 2010

Signs of an Improving Job Picture

Two bits of news today suggest that the job picture may be improving, a situation that could lead to increased consumer spending on discretionary products this year, possibly even for powersports equipment.

A report in today’s Wall Street Journal indicates that corporations are spending more on raises and bonuses than they have in the recent past as a means to keep their key employees at home. “They are feeling more confident about how 2010 will shake out,” David Smith, an executive with Accenture, told the newspaper. The moves, he said, are an effort to ward off employee poaching by competitors.

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Congress Should Fix the CPSIA

February 6, 2009

Wall Street Journal Calls For Changes.

Republicans Seek White House Support.

Congress swept up all children’s products – including youth ATVs and off-highway vehicles – in the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act last year, and then shoved the ill-conceived package— most notably because of the lead content provisions, which were intended to address lead in small toys and jewelry— onto the CPSC last fall for implementation.

Perhaps it’s time for the boys and girls on the Hill to amend the law before the prohibition on the sale of kid’s quads goes into effect next Tuesday.

It would be a relatively simple fix, even though there are plenty of other issues for Congress to deal with. It’s just a matter of amending the effective date of implementation— a one-line change.

It actually might happen. Today, four leading Republicans wrote to President Obama requesting his support for “quick legislative action to correct several deficiencies related to effective dates and agency discretion in the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA).”

Implementation of the CPSIA Tuesday “has the very real potential to cause job losses and wreak economic havoc on thousands of small businesses if they cannot sell their products,” the Republicans write.

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