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Polk: Q1 Used Commercial Vehicle Registrations Declined 26.7%

June 07, 2012, 06:30 AM
Filed Under: Trucking

Used commercial vehicle registrations (GVW 3-8) in the U.S. declined 26.7% to 164,024 units during the first quarter of 2012 as compared with the same timeframe in 2011 according to a recent Polk report.

"While used vehicle registrations remain strong, the long awaited decline in used commercial vehicle registrations as seen in the past two quarters may indicate that a shortage of good, clean available units could finally be upon us," said Gary Meteer, account director for commercial vehicle solutions at Polk.
During the 2012 calendar year, a record 791,288 used commercial vehicle registrations were reported, representing a 17.7% increase from the number reported during the 2011 calendar year. "With the first quarter complete, it is hard to believe that the total number of used registrations during 2012 will meet or beat the record levels seen in 2011," he continued.

During the quarter, used commercial vehicles represented 55.9% of total commercial vehicle transactions in the market, compared to 70% during the first quarter of the 2011 calendar year. Together with 129,755 new registrations of GVW 3-8 vehicles over the same time period, total commercial vehicle transactions during the first quarter of 2012 were down 10% from the same quarter last year.

Used registrations for each of the GVW categories during the first quarter of the 2012 calendar year were lower than the levels achieved during the same quarter in the 2011 calendar year, with declines ranging from 46.4% for GVW 7 vehicles to a decline of 18.6% for GVW 3 vehicles.
"One of the most frequently watched and analyzed activities in the commercial vehicle market is the number of used registrations for GVW 8 vehicles," said Meteer. "The used registrations of GVW 8 vehicles were down 27.6% from the level achieved during the first quarter of the 2011 calendar year."  GVW 8 used vehicle registrations during the first quarter this year accounted for 39.8 % of total used transactions compared to 38.6%last year and 47.6% and 41.2% respectively for the 2010 and 2009 calendar years.

Vehicles included in Polk's analysis summary must meet two specific criteria – that both the business name and the business address on the vehicle registration must have changed from the previous owner. Additionally, the Polk analysis is based on information supplied from each state's Department of Motor Vehicles.
"The Polk analysis does not indicate a lack of confidence in the used commercial truck market, but it does indicate that the continued growth experienced since the 2008 calendar year will in all likelihood not continue during the 2012 calendar year," said Meteer. 

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