ACT’s preliminary October data shows year-to-date sales of used Class 8 trucks up 10%

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According to preliminary data released Nov. 17 by ACT Research, sales of used Class 8 trucks dropped 10% from September to October, but year-to-date figures showed a 10% increase for the first 10 months of 2020.

COLUMBUS, Ind. — Preliminary used Class 8 volumes (same dealer sales) dropped 10% month over month in October but are 10% higher year to date compared to the first 10 months of 2019, according to the latest preliminary release of the State of the Industry: U.S. Classes 3-8 Used Trucks published by ACT Research. Compared to October 2019, volumes are down 12%.

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Other data released in ACT’s preliminary report included month-over-month comparisons for October 2020, which showed that average prices increased 4%, while average miles rose 1% and average age gained 2%, compared to September. Year to date, average price, miles and age were all lower — down 11%, 3% and 7%, respectively — compared to the first 10 months of 2019.

“How the year ultimately plays out will depend heavily on the demand for equipment, particularly in the spot freight markets, where rates have yet to show any signs of abating from recent record highs,” said Steve Tam, vice president of ACT Research. “That said, one of the most frequent questions we are being asked today is why truckers are buying trucks when there are still tens of thousands of unemployed truck drivers, whose rigs are sitting idle.”

ACT’s Classes 3-8 Used Truck Report provides data on average selling price, miles and age based on a sample of industry data. In addition, the report provides the average selling price for top-selling Class 8 models for each of the major truck OEMs — Freightliner (Daimler); Kenworth and Peterbilt (Paccar); International (Navistar); and Volvo and Mack (Volvo).

“While seemingly illogical at a macro level, each buyer likely has his or her own reasons for buying and is probably not looking at the big picture of balancing work and capacity,” Tam noted. “Buyers are probably unaware that they are individually contributing to a faster imbalance of too many trucks and not enough freight, which will hasten the next peak and send the industry down the backslope of the next cycle.”

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