Prices may continue to soar at collector car auctions, but the June report of the Hagerty Market Rating sustained its largest decline in the past 14 months, in part because of what Hagerty called “diminishing expert sentiment” in its monthly market rating news release.
The monthly rating was at an all-time high of 72.04 in May, but analysts for the company that sells classic car insurance, and tracks and publishes car valuation guides, noted:
* A one-third reduction in the number of cars going to auction compared with the same four-week period in 2014, “primarily due to single-collection sales tapering off;”
* Private sales posting their smallest increase in transaction prices in the past year.
Hagerty’s monthly news release offered a couple of examples:
1967-73 Mercury Cougar — average prices dropped 21 percent in the past year and only 23 percent sold above their insured value compared with 36 percent selling above insured value a year ago;
Jaguar XJ-S — average sales prices have dropped 15 percent in the past year with only 4 percent selling above insured value compared with 40 percent a year go.
* While insured values again set record highs, the month-over-month increase slowed in the second month in a row in both the broad and high-end markets;
Still, some vehicles continued to show strong transaction prices compared with insured values. These included the Ferrari 308/325, Porsche 911 930 Turbo and the Sunbeam Tiger, the news release noted.
* Expert sentiment continued to diminish, falling more than two points month-over-month, and is down 8.2 points compared with a year ago. Factors noted were increasing scarcity of top-quality cars on offer and long holding times for any inventory that was not of top quality.
Nonetheless, Hagerty chief executive McKeel Hagerty noted, “Despite a sizable decline, this month’s Hagerty Market Rating is still solidly in growth territory. That growth, however, is slowing throughout the market.
“Expectations haven’t mounted yet for the summer auction season,” he added, “but a few top-tier consignments for the California auctions in August could provide a boost in confidence.”