* Truck deliveries down 9 pct y/y vs forecast rise
* Shipments down in 17 pct in Europe
* Deliveries also slump in Latin America, Asia (Adds Volvo comments, detail, background)
STOCKHOLM, Aug 21 (Reuters) - World number two truck maker Volvo posted a surprise fall in truck shipments in July, hit by slowing economies in Europe, South America and Asia.
Shipments of Volvo, Mack, UD Trucks and Renault trucks fell 9 percent year on year, versus a mean forecast in a Reuters poll of analysts for a rise of 4 percent. (ID:nL5N0QQ3KR]
Volvo said that in Europe, strong figures the previous year due to the introduction of new emission standards had affected the comparison while sluggish economies in countries like France had also had an impact.
“Then Russia has pulled down the whole of eastern Europe,” Volvo spokeswoman Kina Wileke said. “It is the unstable political situation and then the whole Russian economy is weak.”
Gothenburg-based Volvo said deliveries in its top market, Europe, fell 17 percent while shipments in South America fell 36 percent, mainly affected by Brazil.
Customers there took a cautious stance ahead of a presidential election in the country while Volvo also shut down production there during the football World Cup.
Shipments in Asia fell 15 percent but were up 21 percent in North America.
“The U.S. has a strong economy at the moment with demand in the transport sector, activity in the building sector and then the U.S. has been pulled down by ageing fleets and those are now starting to be replaced,” Wileke said.
Volvo expects demand this year for trucks in Europe - its biggest market - to shrink slightly due to a weak start to the year, but to have decent growth in North America. (Reporting by Mia Shanley and Simon Johnson; Editing by Michael Urquhart)