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Harley-Davidson CEO: Yes, Millennials Are Riding Motorcycles

Harley-Davidson (HOG) has a lot on its plate.

Shares of the motorcycle maker fell 5.9% to $48.93 on Tuesday after the company lowered its full year shipments guidance as the iconic American brand battles to gain a foothold with younger consumers.

The Milwaukee-based manufacturer now expects to ship between 241,000 and 246,000 vehicles in 2017, down from the 262,221 vehicles it shipped in 2016. The company had previously forecast that shipments would be "flat to down modestly" from the year before.

TheStreet talked with Harley-Davidson CEO Matt Levatich about the quarter and outlook for the rest of the year. What follows is a condensed and edited version of our conversation.

Question: In the quarter, what took you by surprise?

A. We expected it to down, but it was much worse than we thought. In addition, sequentially through the quarter the trends were worsening. One of the things that we like is the year to date propping up of used-bike prices and stability in that market space, which accrues over to the new bike market.

We are pulling down shipment guidance to what we think U.S. demand will...