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Are Used Car Prices Going Up Or Down?

So what is really going on with used car prices? For the first few months of 2022, wholesale vehicle prices kind of dropped a little bit. Not much, but a little bit for three months straight.

A shift in May and June
Well, here in June, the prices went up. After three months of sequential declines, wholesale prices edged higher in May. And this is right in the middle of having higher gas prices, inflation, higher interest rates on homes, and home prices still being up. So what gives?

Factors Behind the Changes
What’s going on with the used car market? Well, it could be that during the first few months of the year, there was a little bit more new car inventory that kind of came out into the marketplace in February, March, and April. And so used cars kind of slowed down a little bit. Maybe some dealerships got stacked up with vehicles in their used car department.

New Car Inventory Dilemma
Now, once we get into May and even June, new cars’ inventory is even worse than it was. We’ve seen some data where some of the manufacturers have a 5- or 10-day supply of vehicles. Big manufacturers like Mazda, Toyota, Honda, and Subaru have a single-digit or 10- or 15-day supply of vehicles. You can’t run a dealership with just that many cars. So maybe now dealerships are going back to the well to find some used cars to fund and supply their inventory.

Let us know what you think. Are you a dealer? Why are you seeing used car prices go up? Are retail prices going up, or are your margins getting thinner for your used car inventory?

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