Used truck sales dropped 14 percent in May, down 22 percent from a year earlier (with video)

Preliminary used truck sales in the heaviest weight segment – Class 8 – dropped 22 percent in May compared with May 2018.

Used truck sales fell 14 percent in May compared with a 5 percent drop in April. The average price of a used truck increased 5 percent, while average miles contracted dipped 1 percent and average truck age increased 7 percent, according to ACT Research, a trucking industry research firm.

“A spring slowdown is not uncommon, and sales generally increase a bit in the summer, but with the headwinds in the freight market, that is unlikely,” said Steve Tam, vice president of ACT.

“Those who watch the industry closely have been expecting the strong pricing environment to soften this year, and based on preliminary May data, it appears as though that transition may have started.”

Lower truck sales, higher inventory levels and a slowdown in used truck appreciation “is a strong indication that demand for used trucks is waning,” Tam said. “Given a similar story in the freight market, the development makes sense.”

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Clarissa Hawes

Clarissa has covered all aspects of the trucking industry for 13 years. She is an award-winning journalist known for her investigative and business reporting. Prior to joining FreightWaves, she wrote for Land Line Magazine and Clarissa lives in Grain Valley, Missouri, with her family.

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