U.S. brokerage sales volume was 5 percent lower in April than in the same month last year, marking the third time this year that sales were below those in the corresponding month a year earlier.
By the Numbers
Monthly reports on sales of new, used and brokerage boats provide the industry with the information to understand its market and follow consumer trends and buying patterns.
Boat Trader displays listings for nearly 60,000 used boats for sale at any given time, but during the 12-month period that ended March 31, more than 100,000 boats were offered for purchase.
Not too hot and not too cold — just like typical early spring weather in much of the country — recreational boat sales continued to make moderate gains in March.
U.S. brokerage sales fell 11 percent in March from the same month in 2014 and the quarter ended with sales lower by 5 percent, as 5,427 boats were sold.
Ski and wakeboard boats generally are used on lakes, rivers and protected coastal waters where skiing, wakeboarding and wakesurfing thrive.
Led by four segments that topped 40,000 in sales, the recreational boating industry finished 2014 with moderate growth of 6 percent in the main powerboat segments and 8.5 percent industrywide.
After a slow January, the U.S. brokerage market bounced back in February as sales rose 3 percent from the same month a year earlier.
Center consoles are the most popular class of powerboat in many states, especially on the East Coast and Gulf Coast. They are generally versatile boats for fishing and family activities, and they’re capable in rougher water, although they can also be wet, which makes them preferred in warmer water.
Fishermen, pontoon-boat buyers and people who are attracted to small to midsize outboard boats have been leading the recreational boating industry’s rebound from the Great Recession. They may be getting some company.
Pontoons, also known as “party barges,” have been hot in the U.S. boat market for the last few years. We recently did a study of Boat Trader site visitors, counting every time they viewed a page with a pontoon model on it.