After a weak August and September, October’s retail sales per dealership rooftop came in at 5.1, and November’s incoming data points to a similar result. We estimate that dealers sold an average of 5.0 trucks per month in 2015, compared to 5.9 in 2014. This means each rooftop moved about 10 fewer trucks this year than last. See graph below for detail.
The mild uptick in retail sales volume may be due to the accelerated depreciation of the past four months, with buyers attracted to lower pricing. Astute buyers also realize the value of their trade is also heading lower, so there’s no point waiting.
Going into the spring of 2016, demand for used trucks will largely depend on domestic industrial production and manufacturing. That segment of the economy was largely responsible for the new and used truck market recovery post-recession. The slowdown of those sectors in mid-2015 undoubtedly impacted the truck market. We will continue to monitor these factors and publish our analysis.