Analysts in Malaysia are taking an upbeat view on prospects for Malayia's automotive market and sector following a recent upturn to sales.
Accoring to The Star, a research note from Maybank Investment Bank (Maybank IB) Research, said the "worst is likely over."
"We take the view that the sector has bottomed out and is en route for an earnings recovery six to nine months from now, depending on the ringgit's movement," Maybank said.
According to the report, the research house added that the recent uptrend in auto loan applications and approvals were signs of support for further vehicle sales recovery. Maybank IB said auto loan applications, on a three-month moving average basis, expanded for the first time in over a year, rising 7.1% year-on-year in February 2017 after contracting over the past 13 consecutive months.
An analyst from a local bank-backed brokerage told the newspaper he expects vehicle sales to maintain a growth trajectory into the second quarter.
According to the Malaysian Automotive Association (MAA), total vehicle sales grew 10% to 53,717 units last month compared with 48,788 units in the previous corresponding period.
Sales rose 7% to 140,839 units in the first three months of this year compared with 131,251 units in the first quarter of 2016.