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Kontos: Wholesale Prices Show Strength Again in April

May 22, 2017

CARMEL, Ind. — Average wholesale prices were up again in April, climbing from March and from a year ago on the strength of truck values and growth in off-lease volume.

Average wholesale used-vehicle prices reached $11,141 in April, a 2.2% increase over March and a 2.5% increase from a year ago. Compact, mid-size and luxury cars all showed year-over-year price declines of 2% or more, while most of the truck segments registered significant year-over-year gains.

"Much of these supposed increases in used-vehicle values are the result of strength in truck prices and growth in off-lease volumes," Kontos said. "An analysis of sales prices by sale type, model-year age, mileage and model class segment reveals that prices actually fell in April on both a month-over-month and year-over year basis for two bellwether model classes. This drill-down is more reflective of the downward pressure of supply growth on used vehicle values."

Average wholesale prices for used vehicles remarketed by manufacturers were up 2.5% month-over-month and up 3.7% year-over-year. Prices for fleet/lease consignors were up 1.5% sequentially and up 3.2% annually. Average prices for dealer consignors were up 5.1% versus March and up 3.9% relative to April 2016, Kontos said.

Breaking the data down by age shows prices were down 1.3% for three-model-year-old units (a good proxy for off-lease units). 

April CPO (certified pre-owned) sales were down 3.6% month over month and up 0.7% year-over-year, according to figures from Autodata.

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