MARKHAM, Ontario -

Here’s a phrase you don’t often hear during 2020’s topsy-turvy automotive market: “much more even-tempered.”

But alas, that’s how Canadian Black Book describes wholesale vehicle price trends at October’s end.

There was a 0.03% dip in prices this past week for both truck segments and car segments — a decline that is “quite small” when weighed against what usually occurs in late October, CBB said.

“As we near the end of the month of October, we continue to observe the wholesale vehicle market is much more even-tempered compared to the volatility the industry has endured for much of 2020,” the company said in its latest weekly COVID-19 Market Update.

CBB pointed to wholesale price stability over the past month, calling it “a great departure from the market volatility since the spring.”

Since early May, car values have had an average weekly change of (positive) 0.22%, with trucks at (positive) 0.32%, CBB noted in the report.

And compared to the past week’s 0.03% dip for cars and trucks, the same week of 2019 showed much larger declines. There was a 0.30% drop in car values and a 0.26% drop in truck values that week.

“Despite the upheaval year to date, we appear to be in a much quieter and stable phase of the market, at least for the time being,” CBB said.

In terms of auction volume, the first four weeks of the fall market have showed consistent, albeit lower-than-usual, numbers, the company said.

Fall auction volume numbers have been “much lower” compared to the summer, something CBB attributed in part to typical seasonal slowing.

“There are also smaller than expected numbers of lease returns coming to auction each week,” the company said in the report.

“Due to the general shortage of used vehicles in the market, many lease-end vehicles are claimed by the grounding dealers and not being brought to auction,” it added. “Of those destined to be sold, the ever-growing selection of closed auction options and other digital auction platforms are processing quite a bit of the available volume, which diverts yet more vehicles away from the open auction.”