Looking back on November’s wholesale results, the picture painted is very much similar to previous months: Average auction prices were up month-over-month but flat year-over-year. And the uptick was largely due to truck prices.
Wholesale vehicle prices in November averaged $9,883, an increase of 1.1 percent compared to October. This was 0.1 percent higher than year-ago figures.
This was reflected in ADESA Analytical Services’ monthly analysis, provided by Tom Kontos, who pointed out in his Kontos Kommentary that the “strong retail demand,” especially in the certified pre-owned area, is what is maintaining the price levels despite the increasing supply.
“In short, data and other analysts are increasingly validating comments made here for many months about inevitable price softness from growing used-vehicle supply,” Kontos said. “Also as noted repeatedly here, the major saving grace keeping prices from falling further and sooner has been strong retail demand, especially for certified pre-owned vehicles.”
Kontos also pointed out that the softer pricing conditions are hitting institutional consigners more than dealers, “who have the option of retailing vehicles and only wholesaling units for which they can obtain attractive sales prices.” He said this advantage was show via strong month-over-month and year-over-year auction performance for dealer consignors.
To that end, the results for November show that the average wholesale prices for used vehicles remarketed by manufacturers were up 3.1 percent month-over-month and 4.3 percent year-over-year — and Kontos drew attention to the fact that, “manufacturers held out for their asking prices by often selling less than 50 percent of the units offered.”
Looking at vehicles in the 3-year-old segment, which Kontos used as a proxy to represent off-lease vehicles, the prices were down 3.2 percent month-over-month in November, and 9 percent year-over-year.
Utilizing data provided by NADA, Kontos showed that used-vehicle sales by franchised dealers increased 4.1 percent year-over-year while independent dealers saw their sales increase by 5.4 percent, both of which were down month-over-month.
According to figures from Autodata, CPO sales decreased by 13.8 percent month-over-month in November and 4.7 percent on a year-over-year basis. Despite that drop, overall sales remain up 8.7 percent year-to-date.