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Analyst says May boat sales aren’t that bad

Posted on June 26th, 2014
Written by Reagan Haynes

Wells Fargo analysts think investors have become overly focused on the fact that May U.S. boat sales were down without considering several underlying nuances “skewing May data.”

“May U.S. retail unit sales data from Statistical Surveys Inc. perhaps has created the most cross-currents among investors in recent memory,” Wells Fargo senior analyst Timothy Conder wrote in a report.

But the data are based on 27 states and later-reporting states are added into the data about 2-1/2 months after the end of a quarter, Conder wrote.

Also, a decline in yacht unit sales from Delaware, a state that sees a large portion of offshore non-U.S. resident yacht registrations, resulted in the 17.4 percent inboard fiberglass segment decline.

“Within the industry, questions have been raised if non-residents simply are not registering product that is sold, due to increased U.S. government scrutiny of offshore residents and nonresidents,” he said.

April through July are historically key months for U.S. boat retail, accounting for 59 percent of sales.

“However, given adverse weather in Q2 2013, retail sales did not begin to kick in until July and then continued through early October,” Conder said in his report.

Year-to-date sales in 2014 are stronger despite challenges and “clearly appear to be positively accelerating throughout June,” he said.

“Our industry lending sources indicate that U.S. June retail boat unit sales have been stronger than expected, accelerating as the month progressed, including the upper Midwest and Northeast areas most impacted year-to-date by weather,” Conder wrote. “It appears that 2014 could be setting up similar to 2013, which saw strong retail sales during Q3 2013 following Q2 2013 weather-related challenges.”

The company still projects industry sales to be up overall about 8 or 9 percent in the traditional powerboat segment, while ski and wake boats and PWC will each likely see low double-digit growth.

Of the powersports companies Wells Fargo covers, Brunswick Corp. represents the best value, Conder said.

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Sailing spectacular

Sailing spectacular – 84 boats compete in traditional Southend sailing race

By Philip Jones

We are sailing – boats taking part in the Nore Race, from Southend Pier to the Kent coast and back

A SPECTACULAR array of boats greeted visitors as the traditional Nore Race got under way from Southend Pier.

The race, from the pier to Shoebury, across to the Kent coastline and back again, has been running since 1922 and is organised by Benfleet Yacht Club.

Simon Boygle, of Thorpe Bay Yacht Club, was the overall winner, finishing in three hours and 26 minutes in his multi-hull dinghy Fat Cat.

All 84 boats finished the course, the last one coming in just two minutes inside the six-hour time limit.

Phil Bostock, rear commodore for Benfleet Yacht Club, said: “We had a great day and it proves that Southend really is ‘on sea’.

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European sailing titles for Alfreton brothers

Alfreton’s Ogston Sailing Club are celebrating national and European titles for two of their members.

Harvey Martin (15), of Alfreton, teamed up with current world champion Bobby Hewitt (15) of Leigh and Lowton Sailing Club, to win the Sekonda RS Feva National Championships at Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy.

Then at the RS Tera European Championships at Aquavitesse in Bruinisse, Netherlands, the pair stormed to the European title.

Also at Aquavitesse, Harvey’s brother, Roscoe Martin (12), won the RS Tera European title.

At the National Championships, 110 boats took part and Harvey Martin and his crew, Bobby Hewitt, led the fleet after scoring three firsts on the opening day.

Day two racing was delayed due to the wind, and eventually Gold Fleet were started in eight knots and a reasonably consistent direction which ended in a third place for Harvey and Bobby.

On the final day, they opened with a second place before winning the penultimate race to take the title with a race to spare.

Harvey is a member of the Derbyshire Institute of Sport. He is supported by Rooster Sailing, Harken, the Harry Fisher Trust and Derbyshire Sport ICON Funding.

Then at the RS Feva European Championships, where 48 competitors from six nations battled it out for the honours, competition was very tight until new UK Champions Harvey and Hewitt blew everyone away with a stunning last five races to win by a comfortable 18-point margin.

Harvey and Bobby’s ambitions are now set on the RS Feva World title in France next month.

The 2014 RS Tera European Championships saw 74 competitors entered. Roscoe Martin started well, securing top spot after the first day of racing.

The second day saw the breeze average 11 knots with gusts as high as 16 and lulls as low as eight, so was a very testing tactical day. Racing was very close, but overnight Roscoe held on to top spot.

Over day three, there were three more hotly-contested races with the leaders constantly changing.

Once on shore there was much anticipation as to who had won the European title, but it was soon confirmed that Roscoe Martin had done just enough. Roscoe is supported by the Harry Fisher Trust.

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