A positive dealer sentiment for the retail market


Written by: Philip Nothard

The results of the latest Dealer Survey for April 2015 are in...
Generally for a post new-plate month, the overall dealer sentiment remains, in the main, positive for the retail market. Notwithstanding some easing in areas that you may expect at this time of the year around Easter, there are reports of profit margins seeing signs of recovery and stock becoming more readily available to satisfy the areas where the consumer demand continues.
  • Although an easing from 50% respondents reporting an increase in footfall during March compared to February; this month in a post new-plate month c.30% are, nevertheless, reporting an increase and 20% experiencing no change. 
  • The on-line activity sees a little more change, with 61% reporting an increase. This would be no surprise for many when comparing the month of April with March, on the back of an Easter break.
  • An area very much close to the hearts of many, as year-to-date the market sentiment has been focused on margin compression; 26% are still experiencing pressure and 42% seeing little or no change from March into April. The positive news in April, is that over 30% are reporting an improvement to their margins.
  • The trend seems to be continuing as expected, as 56% report that the availability of stock is better, with below  than half experiencing a worsening or no change. 
  • Although volumes of stock on the increase, approximately two-thirds of the respondents have stated the quality has continued about the same, and the remaining majority report an improvement. This raises the question around ‘what is happening with those poor quality, less desirable unsold cars?’ 
  • As expected at this time of the year, following a new plate month; the retail/consumer demand has eased with a drop from 63% in March to 30% this month experiencing an improvement on the previous month – in many ways; this is a very positive sentiment that the retail and consumer market remains buoyant.  The other two-thirds split between those reporting it’s declined and those that haven’t seen a change.  
  • This month we asked whether the market is anticipating an increase the availability of stock throughout this quarter, and interesting the sentiment was marginally mixed. With the majority of 68% believing, it will and the remaining 32% not expecting to see any change in volumes.  Interestingly, there are some concerns, whether it will be the right vehicles to satisfy demand and stocking profiles. 

The Market Survey – for Dealers, by Dealers
Why has this survey been done?
This market survey has been created in response to dealers hankering for a more holistic current sentiment of the questions they ask themselves daily, so they can understand the temperament of the wider market.
Who is it for?
Respondents cover a very diverse sector of the automotive industry, from the larger franchise groups, supermarkets, independents, single site owner-driven operations, through to auctions and remarketing.
When is it undertaken?
The survey is done monthly, within a very small open window. This ensures that the responses are market relevant and current. The data in this survey is for April 2015.
Get involved!
If you want to be involved in next month's Dealer Survey – for Dealers, by Dealers - then please contact CAP's Black Book Editor and Retail & Consumer Specialist, Philip Nothard.
07702 382025