Aluminum, fiberglass sales dipped in August

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Aluminum-boat sales continued to fare better than fiberglass for August. Preliminary registration data for the month showed that sales of all fiberglass boats, including PWC, declined by 42.9 percent, while aluminum sales decreased by 26.1 percent.

This report is based on 27 states.

Fiberglass boats in the popular 14- to 30-foot range, minus PWC, fell 44.3 percent in the early reporting states. PWC mirrored the activity in the fiberglass segment, dropping 41 percent.

The aluminum segment held up better, though it still posted a 26.1 percent decline. Similar to the glass market, higher-volume states continued to post double-digit declines; however, one quarter of the early states tallied positive growth for the period.

The August results exemplify the challenging economic environment the marine industry is confronting. Sellers are forced to focus on niche areas until the market hits bottom and the higher-volume pivotal states begin to signal a retail recovery.

— Aarn D. Rosen
National marine sales manager, Statistical Surveys Inc.

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