May 2022

Used Vehicle Prices Descend

Wholesale used-vehicle prices have notably fallen from a record high set in January, signaling the worst of sky-high prices related to higher inflation in the U.S. may be behind us. Cox Automotive said that its Manheim Used Vehicle Value Index, which tracks prices of used vehicles sold at its U.S. wholesale auctions, declined 1% in April from March, marking the third straight month of declines from the first month of the year. “We clearly have returned to vehicles depreciating again. That’s a good news story for both inflation and for consumers looking to buy a vehicle,” Jonathan Smoke, chief economist at Cox Automotive told CNBC.

Wholesale vehicle prices have dropped 6.4% since the January record. However, prices are still extremely high, and the index remains up 14% from a year ago. The drop-off in pricing comes as Manheim estimates used retail sales declined 13% in April from March, suggesting demand is easing amid the record-high prices.

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