Lane watch: Compact-car prices hit soft patch

Compact-car prices have stayed strong for much of the year, but Black Book editors noticed these particular vehicles took a bit of dip.
This week’s Market Insights report from Black Book showed that while cars and trucks overall saw very similar depreciation last week, compact cars saw what editors called a “big drop” compared with the previous several weeks. 
Despite this development, Black Book pointed out that many remarketers across the country are still showing healthy demand in the lanes.
“Strong demand in the retail market is resulting in fewer no sales and relatively strong prices at the auctions,” said Anil Goyal, executive vice president for operations at Black Book.
Volume-weighted, editors determined that overall car segment values decreased by 0.30 percent last week. In comparison, Black Book recapped that values had decreased at a similar rate of 0.32-percent per week during the previous four weeks.
Among car segments, those previously mentioned compact cars decreased the most in values last week, sliding by 0.68 percent or $55.
Again looking at volume-weighted data, overall truck segment values (including pickups, SUVs and vans) softened by 0.28 percent last week. In comparison, Black Book noticed the values for trucks had decreased at the same rate per week during the previous four weeks.
Within trucks, editors noted that full-size luxury crossover/SUVs declined the most last week, ticking down by 0.73 percent or $238.
Moving along to what Black Book representatives stationed at nearly 60 sales nationwide, what lane watchers gathered from dealers reiterated the demand that consignors are enjoying.
“The market is still showing stability with few no-sales and relative strength among most segments,” the Black Book observer stationed in Georgia said.
Similar scenes unfolded out West.
The recap from Washington went this way: “Prices remain stable as all of the lanes showed good sales percentages.”
And from California: “Trucks and sport utilities are selling well, which is old news. Both in-lane and internet bids were active.”
The last two anecdotes Black Book shared for the latest report percolated out of the Midwest, which described scenes that might be playing out in other areas, too, especially if used metal is rolling over the curb at a decent clip.
— From Indiana: “A good sale, although consignment is still low. Retail is strong, which is prolonging the strength in the wholesale market.”
— From Michigan: “The post-holiday demand remains strong, which is pushing buyers to place a few extra bids to secure inventory.” 

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