Tough August sees UK motor retailers lose £14,000 on average

Time 10:30 am, October 7, 2019

MOTOR retailers in the UK lost £14,000 on average in August – a significant deterioration from the break-even position achieved during the same month last year, according to latest figures published today by ASE Global.

However, the profitability experts said that while the overall loss was significant, it was still on a par with the losses historically made during the month, with 2018 representing a WLTP-generated anomaly.

Chairman Mike Jones said: ‘Whilst used car returns have remained under pressure, retailers did manage to significantly reduce their stock investment during August, dropping the average investment by 6.2 per cent. This is traditional in a pre-plate change month – however, it is pleasing to see, given the level of pressure to register vehicles we are currently seeing.’

He added: ‘With September not seeing the expected RDE-based boost to registrations and expected profitability in September, the outlook for the remainder of the year looks tough.

‘The one counter to this is that brands have started to introduce network support payments to compensate for the poor year. If this becomes widespread, the overall profit drop will be mitigated.’

MORE: Small profit provides steady start to second half of year for retailers

MORE: Profitable June fails to live up to 2018 performance for dealers

MORE: Tough May sees retailers rack up losses of almost £10,000

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Car Dealer has been covering the motor trade since 2008 as both a print and digital publication. In 2020 the title went fully digital and now provides daily motoring updates on this website for the car industry. A digital magazine is published once a month.

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