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Used car market becoming an economic measuring stick – Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City, Missouri 2021-10-22 10:18:41 –

Huntsville, Alabama — The pandemic has created unprecedented conditions in so many aspects of our lives, and the used car market is no exception.

Richard Hughes, owner of Richard Hughes Auto Sales in Huntsville, Alabama, said: “It’s very hard to get a car, and people are waiting to buy it anyway, so in many cases we don’t put a lot of them.”

Hughes started his business before it went live.

“I was always pumping petrol for my dad during the summer,” he said.

Decades later, he started his own used car dealership.

“This year is 35 years. It has been family-owned.”

Now his family business is changing.

“Whenever I sold a car or waved, I liked to see someone. It’s a thing of the past.”

The pandemic has brought to car purchases what is being done for almost everything. Online interactions have replaced human interactions.

This caused one problem for Hughes and other dealers, but the biggest problem came when supply chain problems caused a global shortage of microchips. There is an unprecedented demand for used cars as new cars are not coming out.

“We don’t have stock for anyone,” Hughes said. “If you can have a product to sell, it sells itself.”

Hughes is currently sitting online every day to buy a car at an online auction.

“It’s easy to bid on 20 cars, especially for work vehicles, vans and trucks, because you can only buy a few, because everyone wants the same, not many,” he said. Told.

Then when he can buy a car, he pays much more than before. Used car prices are up more than 30% compared to this time last year.

Karl Brauer, a car market analyst at ISeeCars.com, explained that “many people’s lifestyles have changed and we have decided to stop using public transport and Uber.”

Consumers should wait to buy a car if possible, as the number of cars will decrease and more people will need it, Brauer said.

“Both sides of the curve are moving in the wrong direction to keep prices down. There are no signs of a dramatic return to regular prices in the near future,” Brauer said.

Record prices are attracting attention. Wall Street traders and other economists are looking to the used car market for the first time to see what the economy will look like in the coming months.

“Used car prices are a factor that people consider about inflation,” Brauer said. “So if that’s what you’re looking at, it’s showing pretty much inflation.”

The used car market reflects price changes faster than some other way of measuring the economy, such as the consumer price index, which measures the prices of goods and food.

“All car sales and prices are very commonly linked to greater economic activity. If we could get the chips back and increase the quantity to meet the demand for these cars, it would definitely be a big factor and overall. World economy, “Brauer said.

Waiting for that boost is that Hughes is considering a difficult choice.

“You have to change with the times, and I’m struggling with that part of it,” he said.

He doesn’t want to quit, even though more and more technology is taking over his business. Hughes said he would hold up for as long as possible, hoping that one day there would be more than free space outside his office.

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