The current uncertain economic situation in the US is reflected in the shipments of consumer and commercial turf products for the month of June, according to the Outdoor Power and Equipment Institute (OPEI). With the exception of riding garden tractors, OPEI says shipments of all products are not expected to experience an increase until MY 2008 (September 2007-August 2008). Total MY 2008 walk-behind shipments are expected to increase by 3.9% over MY 2007 shipments although walk-behind mower shipments are not expected to start expanding until Q2-2008 (December 2007-February 2008). Front engine lawn tractor unit shipments, which peaked in MY 2004, will continue to slide through MY 2007, OPEI says. MY 2008 lawn tractor shipments will increase 0.2% over MY 2007 (virtually flat), and will remain below 1.4 million units. The decline of garden tractor shipments is forecast to continue through MY 2008, OPEI says, closing with only approximately only 69,450 units shipped for the year.
Intermediate commercial turf walker shipments for MY 2007 are predicted to decline by 5.5%, falling below 30,000 units for the year, and will only total about 30,240 units for MY 2008. During MY 2007, commercial turf rider shipments are forecast to fall below 200,000 units. MY 2008 commercial riders are forecast to recover with a 5.9% upsurge.