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ACT Research: Used Class 8 Truck Retail Sales Pulled Back 23% in April

May 31, 2023, 07:07 AM
Filed Under: Trucking

According to the latest State of the Industry: U.S. Classes 3-8 Used Trucks, published by ACT Research, used Class 8 retail volumes (same dealer sales) declined 23 percent month over month in April. Average mileage declined by 1 percent, with average price down 8 percent and age up 3 percent. Longer term, average volumes, price and miles were lower, with age flat year over year.

“Same dealer Class 8 retail truck sales slowed in April, pulling back 23 percent from March. While sales normally decelerate in April, the decrease was greater than the expected 8-10 percent,” said Steve Tam, Vice President at ACT Research. “With inventory on the rise, and more importantly, not a limiting factor for sales, the logical conclusion is that demand is softening. This is a plausible explanation, especially given waning economic and freight conditions.”

“Examining each of the channels individually will shed light on how other indicators are faring. Near-term channel results reveal the usual pullback from the quarter-end spike in auction volumes. After spiking 93 percent m/m in March, auction activity shrank 45 percent m/m in April. Wholesale transactions improved, jumping 72 percent m/m,” he added. “Combined, the total market fell 28 percent m/m in April.”

Tam concluded, “As the year progresses, the year-to-date scenario also continues to diverge from last year. The overall market extended its lead to 5 percent YTD. Despite the early lead, we believe that truckers’ appetites for used equipment will be curbed as freight volumes continue to contract. Our best estimate suggests that inventory continues to increase, supporting buyers working to refresh their used truck fleets.”

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