“Harley-Davidson Inc. barely broke even in the last quarter of a year in which the struggling American icon got caught up in President Donald Trump’s trade wars. The motorcycle maker’s shares plunged the most in a year.
“Trump attacked Harley last year after it announced plans to shift some U.S. production overseas to sidestep levies imposed by the European Union. But the motorcycle maker has more than tariffs and angry tweets to blame for its performance. U.S. retail sales tumbled 10 percent in the three months ended in December, the eighth consecutive quarterly drop.”
“World-wide sales dropped 6.1 percent last year from 2017 to about 228,000 motorcycles. In the U.S. sales fell 10 percent, but the number was lifted up slightly by stronger sales in Latin America, according to the Wall Street Journal. Additionally, shares dropped seven percent in pre-market trading.”
The WSJ article that Jalopnik references:
“The company faces pressure as it core, older customers buy fewer bikes and younger consumers show less interest in buying its motorcycles. There is a glut of used Harley products on the domestic market, allowing buyers to pick up its signature cycles at prices that are lower than new models.
“The company has also faced higher costs in the U.S. due to tariffs the Trump administration implemented on steel and aluminum and said last year it would shift more production overseas to avoid European Union tariffs on its bikes.”
Now, you may recall that Harley went all-in with Prznint McDeals at the beginning of the 4th Reich, but then when the easy-to-win Trade Wars started, increased cost (taxed) of raw materials gave them a shove to emerging markets, OVER THERE! Prznint Stupid turned on them like a rat in a corner.
And now we see that the Boomers with money (the only Harley-Davidson market segment in the US) are shifting to buying Medicare Scooters, selling their old rides, and the Yutes are not buying these things (and certainly not buying them new!), and so H-D accelerated (see what I did there?) moving their production closer to their growth market. This is business school basics.
Larger lesson here: everything that Comrade Trump touches gets ruined, sooner or later. Get into bed with Trump and you’ll regret it, Corporate America.