Lane watch: Buyers limiting themselves to ‘good deals’ even as prices plummet
That “summertime slowdown” Black Book previously mentioned is intensifying quickly, as analysts spotted the largest single-week wholesale value drop since mid-January.
According to the newest installment of Market Insights, Black Book reported that wholesale prices sunk 0.73% last week even as the estimated average weekly sales rate improved “slightly” to 47%.
“Sellers are beginning to adjust their floors and the wholesale price trend reflects the adjustment,” Black Book said in the report released on Tuesday. “Leading up to the July 4th holiday, the market had been trending downward, but sales rates were low as buyers exercised caution and sellers held tight on their floors.
“As we got into the first full-week post-holiday, sellers were willing to negotiate,” analysts continued. “However, buyers this past week still were not jumping at the lower prices. Inventory levels on dealers’ lots are growing and the days to turn is also increasing so they are only buying ‘good deals.’”
On a volume-weighted basis, Black Book determined overall car segment values decreased 0.77% last week, up from a 0.52% decline generated a week earlier.
Looking at car value movements by age, analysts determined prices for 0- to 2-year-old car segments dropped by 0.53%, while values for 8- to 16-year-old cars declined 0.63%.
Black Book noted values for all nine car segments decreased last week, with prices for luxury cars pacing the declines by softening 1.10%. It marked the largest single week drop for luxury cars since the last week of 2022.
Analysts also mentioned sporty cars posted the smallest level of decline last week, sliding 0.40%, but they said it was still the largest depreciation for the segment since the week of New Years.
Moving over to trucks, Black Book watched its volume-weighted data show that overall truck segment decreased 0.70% last week, up from the prior week’s drop of 0.45%.
Looking at the truck information by age, analysts indicated 0- to 2-year-old truck prices dropped by 0.49%, while values for 8- to 16-year-old models declined 0.52%.
Black Book pointed out that just like cars, prices for all 13 truck segments decreased last week. Leading the way were mid-size and compact luxury crossovers sliding by 1.12% and 1.34%, respectively.
Also of note, analysts determined values for small pickups dropped another 0.99% last week, doubling the depreciation level of 0.45% registered during the prior week.
Black Book closed its latest report by reiterating what analysts are seeing in the wholesale market as the heat of summer rages.
“Halfway through July and prices continue to drop in all segments. Sellers are starting to loosen up their floors on all segments,” Black Book said.
“As we saw last week, buyers were more willing to purchase, but still exercised caution as they looked for ‘good deals.’ With the lower floors, the sales rate finally showed a small improvement,” analysts continued.
“As always, the Black Book team of analysts will keep their eyes on the market, watching for developing trends and insights,” they went on to say.