Despite Big Fluctuations, Wholesale Market on a ‘Positive Roll'

Despite what he called the most volatile market he has seen in 28 years, the vice president and managing editor of Black Book says the used-vehicle market is “not distressed.”

In his most recent “Beggs on the Market” video report, Ricky Beggs noted that big swings up, as well as big drops have taken place in many used-vehicle segments. Black Book made value updates to 10,036 unique vehicles in a single day. But almost 95 percent of those adjustments were increases in value, with a strong $253 average increase. That proves the market is far from being distressed, he said.

“I am glad we have had another busy week and also, one where the market is on a positive roll,” he said.

Seven of the 10 car segments were up the past week. Six of them were up for the first time in at least the previous six weeks. Eleven of the 14 truck segments that Black Book tracks showed positive movements. And the overall truck market only declined one week since Jan. 16, Beggs noted.

Offering some more positive news about the wholesale market, Beggs said auction volumes continue to be much smaller than the auction operators would like. “But at least the sales percentages are much greater than could be expected,” Beggs stated.

And the only negative news was largely due to economic conditions, he said. This past week, two of the three truck segments that did fall in value—full-size vans and full-size wagons—are in the middle of a six-week downturn due largely to outside economic conditions, he added.

“With full-size vans and full-size wagons being players in more of the commercial- and work-oriented markets, this trend is reflective of the tough economy and especially those of the service and delivery businesses,” Beggs commented.

“Recently talking to a small business operator—a true ‘Joe the plumber’—he told me he is currently operating only four of his eight service vehicles,” Beggs noted. “In a normal economy he might be at the point of replacing a couple of these service vans, which would make these segments trend much differently.”

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