Decline of wholesale used vehicle prices slow

The pace of the decline of wholesale used vehicle prices slowed this past week.

The overall market dropped 0.75 percent, according to BlackBook’s Weekly Market Insights. The drop was roughly half of last week’s fall of 1.4 percent.

BlackBook reported the pending strike by the United Auto Workers union is already impacting the auction lanes. The deadline to strike a deal between the union and Ford, General Motors and Stellantis is Thursday (Sept. 14).

“This week is the one that we have all been holding our breath for – will the UAW strike? If so, what will be the impact on the industry?” BlackBook asked. “The market depreciation slowed last week in anticipation of the news on the strike expected to come later this week. Auction conversion rates increased last week, as buyers are preparing for the potential drop in inventory as a result of the strike. Despite depreciation slowing compared to the prior week, the weekly declines are still well above typical seasonal movements.”

Premium sports cars was the lone vehicle segment to increase in price in the past week, growing by 0.28 percent or $151. It was the third straight week for it to increase.

“The strength seen here is mainly being driven by demand for the Chevrolet Corvette,” BlackBook reported.

Car prices dropped on average 0.89 percent or $146. Compact cars fell 1.21 percent or $149 and mid-size cars 1.1 percent or $151.

Truck and SUVs lost on average $149 or 0.69 percent. Full-size luxury crossover SUVs fell 1.21 percent or $521. Sub-compact crossover SUVs were down 1.35 percent or $186.
The sales rate at auction increased 1 percent to 50 percent.

“Auction conversion rates went up for the second week in a row and auction inventory has leveled off,” BlackBook said. “Now, we are not seeing inventory levels increasing as much as we have seen in past weeks. If the UAW strike happens this week, our expectation is that we could see wholesale prices start moving up fast as a result of less inventory coming to the auctions.”

The retail price index stayed at 0.99, and the retail inventory index remained at 1.01. The days to turn dropped to 44 days, a decrease of six days from mid-August.

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