Portions of the U.S. are recovering from some of the coldest temperatures in decades and folklore groundhogs are providing mixed forecasts. However, Black Book editors already are seeing depreciation signals of spring being straight ahead.
Reinforced by the assessment of an auction general manager from the Southeast, editors noted in this week’s Market Insights report that early signs of spring arrived with a pair of truck segments showing no depreciation.
“We are starting to see a normalization in depreciation after higher drops at the start of the year. Both car and light truck segments are showing stability in values,” Black Book executive vice president of operations Anil Goyal said in the newest report.
Volume-weighted, Black Book reported overall car segment values decreased by 0.56 percent last week. In comparison, editors mentioned car values decreased by 0.65 percent on average during the prior four-week period.
“In car segments, the depreciation across segments was quite steady,” editors added.
Again volume-weighted, Black Book determined overall truck segment values — including pickups, SUVs and vans — softened by 0.42 percent last week. That’s below the average editors noticed during the previous four weeks when the decline came in at 0.58 percent.
Looking closer at the truck segment, editors noted the compact crossover/SUV segment depreciated the most, sliding by 0.68 percent or $78.
Turning next to the observations from Black Book’s representatives stationed at nearly 60 sales nationwide, here is what an auction GM in Tennessee told the lane watcher.
“Our sales percentages have been in the low 60s which is good. The market hasn’t hit full stride yet, but I expect it to take off in the next couple of weeks,” the auction GM said.
The other tales from the lanes offered an array of what’s happening in the lanes, including:
— From Massachusetts: “For the second week in a row the money was subpar. One of the few bright spots was the midsize SUVs.”
— From New Jersey: “For the most part luxury cars and SUVs were selling for lower, even the units with low miles and strong CRs.”
— From Indiana: “The sale was much better than the weather, with compact cars and CUVs leading the way.”
— From Florida: “The market is steady here, with dealers looking for vehicles that have both good miles and good history.”
Update on the specialty markets
As they do at the beginning of each month, Black Book editors also relayed their latest observations of what’s happening within the specialty markets. Here is that rudown:
— Collectibles: Black Book indicated the final sales numbers from the collectible car auctions held in Arizona are in, and they’re “impressive.” Editors computed the total for roughly 10 days of sales was a little more than $250 million.
— Recreational Vehicles: “We are solidly into winter now, and brutally cold weather has gripped large parts of the country,” editors said. “Although the volume of vehicles offered at auction has dropped, as we’d expect for this time of year, the values of those that were sold actually increased a little bit for both towables and motorized units.”
— Powersports: Black Book indicated powersports values are still “frozen” in negative territory this month. “The changes in value we see for February are very similar to the changes from January,” editors added.
— Heavy Duty: Editors noted used trucks of all ages dropped more across all segments than last month but are “still doing very well.”
— Medium Duty: Black Book mentioned increased demand has helped offset price depreciation as a steady supply of used inventory continues through January.