U.S. used-car prices to drop image

Used-car prices in the United States are estimated to fall due to supply increases as rebounding new-car sales put more trade-ins on dealer lots.

In June, the number of used vehicles reached a low point because new cars and trucks sales from 2008 to 2012 were quite poor. This adds to the government’s 2009 “cash for clunkers”, a program that took around 700.000 cars off the U.S. roads. The increase of supplies will make the prices go down even more, to 5.2% by 2017.

President of the Santa Barbara California-based division, Larry Dominique, said that “The continued strength of new-car sales is increasing the availability of high-quality used cars as shoppers continue to trade in their old vehicles. Additionally, because of the popularity of short 24- and 36-month leases, the drought of used-car supply is already starting to subside.”

Low interest rates, widely available credit and a rebounding U.S. economy contributed to 5 straight months of U.S. new-vehicles sales at an annual rate of over 16 million. What has also boosted deliveries is the auto leasing at its highest rate. Analysts predict sales of 16.3 million new cars, the most since 2006. The Manheim Used Vehicle Index, which measures used-vehicle pricing, showed a score of 124 in June, tha was down from 124.9 in April and from a high of 127.8 in May 2011. The index has stayed above 120 for all but the past three months since October 2010. Before the 2008 economic crisis, the index had never topped 117.4.

By Gabriela Florea