Prices Down in September but Market Conditions Stronger for Dealers

Tom Webb
Chief Econ­o­mist
Man­heim Con­sult­ing

Whole­sale used vehi­cle prices con­tin­ued declin­ing for the fifth straight month in Sep­tem­ber. The Man­heim Used Vehi­cle Val­ue Index read­ing was 121.4, down 1.1% from a year ago. Trade ins and lease turn-ins brought high­er-than-desired used vehi­cle inven­to­ry lev­els for fran­chised deal­ers. Deal­ers who priced right quick­ly retailed them and then pur­chase from grow­ing sup­ply of auc­tion con­signed units. Inde­pen­dent deal­ers also increased pur­chas­ing activ­i­ty giv­en a slight improve­ment in retail sales and low­er whole­sale pric­ing.

Here’s the lat­est Man­heim Used Vehi­cle Val­ue Index report

Retail Sales Had Bet­ter Sep­tem­ber after August when Used Declined More than 9%:
Strong new vehi­cle sales stole some used buy­ers, but result­ing trade-ins were then retailed.

Pick­ups and Vans Strongest, but All Mar­ket Class­es Show­ing Price Eas­ing on Sea­son­al­ly Adjust­ed Basis:
Lux­u­ry car price decline slowed, which could be good for lessors with large lux­u­ry vol­ume com­ing back soon.

Vehi­cles in $9K to $10K Price Range Con­tin­ued to Show Weak­est Rel­a­tive Price:
Seg­ment may be helped in com­ing months by falling gaso­line pump prices.

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