On Tuesday, the Labor Department reported that inflation rose a whopping 5.4% in June, the highest rate since August 2008. The rise is likely due to recovery from the pandemic, as consumers drive up demand for plane tickets, cars, and other items that weren’t selling during lockdown.
One of the main drivers of inflation is the price of used cars — according to data from used car marketplace CarMax, some carmakers have seen prices soar as high as 50% year-to-date. The increase can be attributed to the prices dealers pay for the vehicles at mass auctions. Some models are so expensive, in fact, that they may cost more than their brand new counterparts. A study from iSeeCars shows that used models like the Kia Telluride and the Toyota Tacoma cost thousands more than new models.
Wholesale prices soared in the last four months before dipping in June, indicating that used car prices may dip back down again soon, potentially lowering inflation rates. The Federal Reserve is confident that inflation will dip back down once consumer demand evens out when the pandemic recovery ends.
According to our data, used car prices for the top-selling carmakers have soared. Ford, which sold the most vehicles in 2020, has seen its used car price increase 45.4% year-to-date. Toyota, the second highest-selling carmaker, saw its price increase 30.5%. Chevrolet, however, saw the highest price increase at 50.5%, from $22,000 to $33,000.
Prices for used electric vehicles (EVs) have jumped as well. Chevrolet, which produces the Bolt, once again saw the highest increase year-to-date at 45%. Ford, which makes electric versions of the Mustang and F-150, saw a 35.5% increase. Toyota was less affected by the surge, only seeing a 22.5% increase. Meanwhile, the average price of a used EV on CarMax has increased 98% in the past year.
About the Data:
Thinknum tracks companies using the information they post online, jobs, social and web traffic, product sales, and app ratings, and creates data sets that measure factors like hiring, revenue, and foot traffic. Data sets may not be fully comprehensive (they only account for what is available on the web), but they can be used to gauge performance factors like staffing and sales.