Tropical Storm Harvey could reduce the number of auto sales made in August by 2%, Edmunds estimated Tuesday, with declines continuing into September.
Hard-hit Texas is the second-largest auto market in the U.S. with 9% of the nation's retail sales, Edmunds' Jessica Caldwell said, "so an event of this magnitude is going to make a dent in sales." Subsequent months could offer a localized boost in auto sales as a recovery takes hold and those affected by Harvey become able to buy replacement vehicles.
About 366,000 new vehicles on dealer lots in Texas could be affected by Harvey, which Caldwell called "an unprecedented storm." Many of those units are high-profit trucks and SUVs, which means automakers "will feel a slight pinch, at least in the immediate term."
Edmunds said Texas is the top sales market for Ford (F) - Get Report , Fiat Chrysler Automobiles-owned (FCAU) - Get Report RAM, General Motors-owned (GM) - Get Report GMC and Cadillac, and Mitsubishi vehicles.
More of What's Trending on TheStreet: