Used Equipment Sales Soar, Prices Drop, EquipmentWatch Reports

Ryan Whisner Headshot
Updated Mar 27, 2023
bulldozer at auction
The average fair market value of construction equipment was down slightly in December 2022 compared to December 2021.
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EquipmentWatch’s latest Market Report states that the average full market value (FMV) for construction equipment in December 2022 was 0.8% lower compared to December 2021. 

In November, construction equipment resale prices dipped by 4.1%, which was at the time the largest single-month change recorded in 2022. The report states that December’s average FMV surpassed that milestone by dropping by 4.2% compared to the previous month.

The multiple month-over-month declines dropped the average FMV to a nearly flat rating compared to December 2021.

As prices dropped, resale and auction activity increased, according to EquipmentWatch.

The report states that resales were up 1.1% over November and 7.8% above December 2021. construction resale and auction price percentage changesEquipmentWatch

Analysts believe the likely drivers for the increased activity were a dramatic spike in construction starts in December and anticipation of strong activity in the manufacturing and infrastructure sectors. 

In January, the Dodge Construction Report indicated that construction starts were up 51% in December, and nonbuilding was up 30%. EquipmentWatch analysts suggested that in preparation for those projects, owners were likely offloading equipment that's older and with higher usage than in previous periods. 

Compared to December 2021, equipment age was up by 4.5% and usage was up by 9%. Average age and usage were also up compared to November, rising by 5.7% and 2.1%, respectively.

From an auction-market view, activity rose even more dramatically, up 36.4% compared to December 2021 and 162.4% compared to November. The EquipmentWatch report indicates that auction activity even exceeded that of 2020, by 1.9%.

Among resale and auction channels, some of the top-selling types of equipment include crawler excavators, articulated wheel loaders, compact track loaders, compact excavators and backhoes.

The monthly report from EquipmentWatch tracks resale and auction prices for over 15,000 models across 389 manufacturers throughout North America. 

EquipmentWatch is owned by Randall Reilly, parent of Equipment World.