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July 9, 2019

Confidence Bounce in June for Tractor Sales  

What began as a gloomy outlook brightened considerably in June for tractor sales in what can only be described as a modest bounce in confidence.

The Australian Agricultural tractor sales market continues to demonstrate a wide variation in activity. Many parts of the country are in fact unaffected by drought and as a result machinery demand has remained strong, particularly in the West. It is the drought affected regions of NSW and Northern Victoria that continue to struggle.

All in all, tractor sales were down 1.5% for the month and remain exactly 10% behind last year.

It appears that the combination of a Federal Coalition Government re election, reduced interest rates and some suitable rainfall has led to an end of financial year push from many customers. Fortunately, dealers are well stocked and have generally been able to deliver to this demand.

Sales in the 200hp (150kw) and above range led the charge in June, up 9 % for the month and now 1% ahead of last year. The 100 to 200hp (75-150kw) segment was steady but remains 14 % behind last year. The 40 to 100hp (30-75kw) range was down 4% now sitting 12% behind last year and it was a similar story in the lower under 40hp (30kw) range, down 2% and 10% on a yearly basis.

Across the states, it continues to be a mixed bag at present with Western Australia a particular standout. Sales there were up again, this time by 14% for the month and remain around 10% ahead of last year. Queensland was another state that recorded a positive result with a 9% lift for the month but remaining 10% behind for the year.

Sales continue to be a challenge in Victoria, now 7% behind for the year whilst NSW continues to struggle, 20% behind last year after another 9% drop in June.

Elsewhere, sales in South Australia are down 20% for the year, Tasmania is up 7% and the NT is in line with last year.

Combine Harvester Sales continue to struggle with the decline in Northern NSW grain production having an impact. Full Year estimates remain in the range of 550 units to occur. This is down from the mid 800’s level of the past few years.

Baler Sales continue to perform well as the demand for hay is still strong. Overall, Balers are now 20% up on last year.

Finally, sales of Out Front Mowers bounced another 25% in the month, now sitting around 12% down on a yearly basis.

Only one week to go until this year’s annual TMA Conference. It will be held on Tuesday July 16th at Hyatt Place Melbourne at Essendon Fields and will present a focus on better understanding the customer of tomorrow. This event is a must for all manufacturers, dealers and suppliers to the industry and promises to be a highlight of the year. Tickets are available and can be found on the TMA website

Gary Northover, Executive Director, TMA