Boat sales hit rough patch in 2Q

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Final data for the second quarter shows sales of fiberglass boats fell 14 percent, but the rate of decline slowed by half from the same period a year earlier.

Overall, 47,497 fiberglass boats were sold during the quarter, according to registration data from 47 states that represent 98 percent of the U.S. boat market. Three states did not report figures.

Sales fell 20 percent in the 14-foot-and-up segment to 24,252. In the 30-foot-and-up segment, sales fell 16.3 percent to 1,584. Ski boat sales fell 24 percent to 2,215.

Sales of jet boats and aluminum pontoon boats showed growth. Jet boat sales rose 19 percent to 1,546; pontoon boat sales rose 4.3 percent to 12,893. Overall, aluminum boat sales rose 2 percent to 33,518.

Deckboat sales fell 23 percent to 1,841. Sales of personal watercraft fell 10 percent to 18,227.

Preliminary sales data from July show that the retail market remains soft, but appears poised to improve when the economy makes employment gains.

— Aarn D. Rosen

National Marine Sales Manager

Statistical Surveys Inc.

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