market reports

Used retail prices fall to $28.3k, the lowest level since August 2021

By David Paris

Used Vehicle Prices Industry

  • Used retail prices at franchised dealers fell by 0.6% or $180 in February compared to January.
  • February’s loss marked the second consecutive month of used retail price softening, however, from a historical perspective retail prices are still incredibly strong and only $2,944 below their all-time high  of nearly $31,264 recorded in April 2022.
  • Through the first two months of the year, used retail prices are 2.4% lower than during the same period in 2023. Retail prices are expected remain healthy as the market enters the spring selling season.

Used Retail VS Wholesale

  • While used retail prices cooled slightly in February, wholesale prices experienced a 1.6% or $246 increase as dealer activity has begun heating up in anticipation of the spring selling season fueled by healthy federal tax refunds.
  • Filing season statistics released by the IRS for the week ending March 1, 2024 showed that while the total number of federal tax returned processed were down 2% relative to the same period in 2023, the average refund amount increased by approximately 5% to an average of $3,182.
  • Over the past year, used retail prices have exhibited greater stability relative to what the market has seen in the wholesale lanes.
  • Through the first two months of the year, wholesale prices are 10.3% or $1,747 lower than during the same period in 2023. As a result, the used retail versus wholesale price gap is still much larger than during pre-2020. Most recently in February, the retail to wholesale gap reached just over $13k.
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