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ACT Research: Used Class 8 Sales Volumes and Prices Rose YTD in July

August 26, 2021, 07:05 AM
Filed Under: Trucking

According to the latest release of the State of the Industry: U.S. Classes 3-8 Used Trucks, published by ACT Research, used Class 8 volumes (same dealer sales) were 4 percent lower month-over-month. Longer term, volumes were down 18 percent year over year, but up 13 percent year to date. Average prices were 3 percent less compared to June, but 46 percent more expensive than in July of 2020, while average miles were 5 percent higher month/month and unchanged year/year. Average age was up 3 percent from June, but down 1 percent compared to July of 2020.

“Used Class 8 same dealer sales volumes continued to fight an uphill battle in July, slipping 4 percent compared to June. Historically, sales in June and July are pretty similar, so the decline was a little bigger than expected,” said Steve Tam, Vice President at ACT Research. “At the heart of the issue is used truck inventory, which continues to lose traction. Underscoring the point, sales were also down year over year. On a positive note, they remained in positive territory year-to-date, albeit at a declining margin.”

Looking at the different sales channels for used Class 8 vehicles, Tam commented, “Channel results were also mixed, with the wholesale and retail segments in decline in the near term. All three outlets saw lower volumes compared to July 2020. Through the first seven months of the year, both the auction and wholesale markets are still in decline.”

He added, “Industry participants, particularly dealers, are beginning to express concerns about the protracted, strong cycle and asking when prices will start to decline. While we do no formally forecast used truck prices, we believe that pricing will remain robust, that is, higher year over year, into Q2’22.” Tam concluded, “Perhaps more salient is that we view the catalyst for change as an orderly attainment of equilibrium between supply and demand, rather than a flood of inventory that could collapse the market. It is also important to keep in mind that when prices do start to decline, it will be from record high levels.”

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