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Charlie Chesbrough shares insights on used-car market

No let-up in used-car strength for ‘quite some time’

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Article Highlights

  1. With various economic and political factors at play, don’t expect the strength in the used-car market, be it unit sales or prices, to die down any time soon.
  2. “Our view is that it’s going to go on for quite some time,” Cox Automotive senior economist Charlie Chesbrough said Tuesday during a conference call with reporters. “On the new-car side, affordability is going to become a greater and greater issue (where) many consumers just can’t afford to get into that new vehicle, so the used-car market becomes their lower-cost alternative.”
  3. It’s not just the sales rate that is climbing. As Chesbrough noted during the call, used-vehicle prices “have really taken off over the course of the summer,” amid the chatter from President Trump about potential import vehicle tariffs.

With various economic and political factors at play, don’t expect the strength in the used-car market, be it unit sales or prices, to die down any time soon.

“Our view is that it’s going to go on for quite some time,” Cox Automotive senior economist Charlie Chesbrough said Tuesday during a conference call with reporters. “On the new-car side, affordability is going to become a greater and greater issue (where) many consumers just can’t afford to get into that new vehicle, so the used-car market becomes their lower-cost alternative.”

An alternative that’s poised to churn out nearly 40 million sales this year, if the latest seasonally adjusted annualized rate is any indication.

According to projections released by Edmunds last week, the used-car retail market was once again forecast to reach 3.4 million sales for August (same as July), which would drive the monthly used-car SAAR to 39.7 million, up from 39.5 million in July.

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