Sales of aluminum boats in March showed a slower decline, according to numbers from 28 early reporting states.
Aluminum boat sales fell 17.2 percent for the month. Total units sold were 4,832, compared to 5,838 in 2008. Mississippi, New York, Alaska and New Hampshire all showed positive growth for the period.
Total fiberglass boats, including PWC, fell 35.8 percent on 7,024 units sold in March.
Fiberglass boats from 14 to 30 feet declined 38.5 percent on sales of 4,475 units. Mississippi and New Hampshire were the only states with growth.
PWC fell 36.5 percent in the month on 1,485 units sold, compared to 2,340 in 2008.
These statistics represent approximately 62 percent of the national market. Only states that currently provide weekly or monthly information are included in this summary. The Coast Guard Documented Vessels file was complete.
The 14- to 16-foot segment of the aluminum market hovered around even in the month, and that's a better sign compared to fiberglass. It's thought the aluminum market could find the bottom before other market declines begin to slow.
This article originally appeared in the June 2009 issue.