A recent Transport Topics article (subscription required) states that wholesale truck dealers are seeing a drop-off in sales. As we mentioned in last month’s GuideLines, auction and dealer wholesale sales reported to NADA showed a 30.8% drop in volume from 2010 to 2011 (see graph). However, after a steep drop in the first three quarters of 2010, volume leveled out at a 2400 sales/month average, which is where is has remained up to the current period.
Given the steady volume throughout 2011 combined with the upward trend in wholesale pricing, we do not attribute the shifting volume to lack of demand, but rather the well-known lack of supply of low to average mileage trucks. Just like the retail market, the wholesale market is constrained by a lack of supply of low to average mileage trucks.