By Mim Monkivitch - TMA
Sales of Agricultural Equipment, particularly tractors, continued at record levels with November delivering sales 38% above the same month last year and are now up 23% year to date. 2020 is now on course to deliver sales well above the 13,000-unit mark.
Optimism in the agricultural sector is extremely buoyant at present with a great harvest underway across the nation supported by the Instant Asset Write Off Scheme which has now been extended to June 2022.
Activity in the month was strong in most states with NSW again the standout up 84% on the same time last year and now sitting 37% ahead for the year. Victoria reported a solid lift up 13% in the month and remains 23% ahead year to date, meanwhile Queensland was up 55% to be 16% up for the year.
The monthly picture in all states is tending to fluctuate a little more than usual as dealers try to cope with social distancing challenges, stock supply challenges and the very hectic nature of the market.
Western Australia sales picked up 54% on and is now in line with last year whilst sales in South Australia dipped for the first month in quite a while but is still 30% up YTD, activity in Tasmania continues to be strong, now 27% ahead for the year.
The increase in sales numbers is again due almost entirely to the ongoing strength in the smaller end of the market supported by the Instant Asset Write off scheme. The under 40hp (30kw) range was up 67% for the month and now sits 32% ahead for the year to date. The 40 to 100hp (30-75kw) range was again up strongly 76% now 28% ahead for the year.
The 100 to 200hp (75-150kw) category was steady and is still up 26% for the YTD whilst sales in the large 200 hp (150kw) PLUS range dipped again leaving this category 8% behind YTD. The 200hp PLUS category has not enjoyed the same level of sales boost as the smaller ranges however, of the back of this year’s outstanding harvest, there is considerable optimism that demand for big tractors will improve
Sales of Combine Harvesters are experiencing a late year flourish in support of one of the best harvests in recent memory and are now 28% ahead of last year.
Baler sales continue their boom run, up 55% for the month, remaining up 35% year to date whilst sales of Out – Front Mowers are flying, now 30% ahead of the same time last year.
2020 has unquestionably been a standout year and we are mindful of the number of important influences that have shaped this and will impact the year ahead. Along with the outstanding weather conditions and the Government’s Instant Asset Write Off Scheme, the issue of stock supply has been a key focus of recent months.
There is hope that the worst may not happen here and that factories are adjusting to their new normal. Where early predictions were of a 12 -16 week delay on deliveries, some suppliers are seeing this improve with a figure of 4 – 8 weeks delay anticipated. Manufacturers are having to deal with not only the impacts of Covid 19 on their workforce but also the impact on component manufacturers, an increasing steel price and an increasing shipping cost, all of which will undoubtedly impact machine prices at some stage.