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Preliminary used Class 8 volumes (same dealer sales) grew 16% month-over-month in July, according to the latest numbers from ACT Research. Longer-term, volumes rose 48% compared to July 2019, and were up 7% when measured against the first seven months of last year.
Other data released in ACT’s preliminary report included month-over-month comparisons for July 2020, which showed that average prices increased 4%, while average miles and average age each decreased, down 4% and 1%, respectively, compared to June. Year-to-date, average price, miles, and age were all lower—down 17%, 2%, and 7%, respectively—compared to the first seven months of 2019.
“The current economic slowdown is largely driven by a dramatic reduction in spending on services, which really is making the situation different this time,” said Steve Tam, vice president at ACT Research. “In the commercial vehicle world, that means that freight continues to move, albeit at a somewhat lower pace.
“The upshot is that truck sales, both new and used, are performing at better than expected levels. That said, on the used truck side, this is curious, particularly given the number of trucking jobs that have been lost since COVID-19 started,” Tam added. “Unemployed truckers temporarily tighten capacity as their trucks are sidelined. This has led to increased freight rates, which has enticed first-time buyers to snap up equipment and jump into the fray.”