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April 10, 2024

Tractor Sales back to earth following boom times

The slowdown in tractor sales continued in the month of March with around 1,000 tractors sold across the nation. This figure is 29% less than the same month last year and has contributed to a 1st quarter result which is 22% behind last year. As we have been reporting for the past few months, this level of activity is back to what is considered normal following the intense activity of the prior 2 years. Indeed, an annual figure of 12,000 units, if achieved would represent a “soft landing” following these boom times.

Whilst sales activity is healthy, the supply shortages of the past are now being replaced by some overstocking in dealers’ yards. Supply chain challenges have made it very difficult to order just the right amount of stock to be delivered at the right time, consequently machines that were ordered some 12 months ago are now only just arriving at a time when demand has slipped.

Looking at the state-by-state picture, Queensland was down 29% against the same month last year to be 19% behind year to date, NSW was down 36% and is now 30% behind for the year and Victoria was off 27% to be 24% below last year. Western Australia reported its first drop in a while, down 13% to be in line with the same time last year. South Australia was down 35%, now down 25% YTD, Tasmania was off 15% for the month with sales in the NT finishing 14% down.

Sales of the 200 hp (150kw) PLUS range were again the best of the machinery categories however this was 3% below the same month last year, still up 50% year to date. The small under 40 hp (30kw) category was down by 26% for the month to be 34% behind year to date This segment, known as the leisure market, is most susceptible to high interest rates so we anticipate challenges here for some time to come. The 40 to 100hp (30-75kw) range was also down 43% and is now behind 36% year to date. Lastly, the 100 to 200hp (75-150 kw) category was down 29% to be 25% off for the year.

Sales of Combine Harvesters are yet to materialise with 89 units sold thus far this year compared to 93 last year. Baler sales finished down 25% on the same month last year with difficult growing conditions for hay and are now 5% up year to date. Finally, sales of Out – Front Mowers were again up this time by around 23% in the month.

TMA Conference
This year’s TMA Conference scheduled to be held on Thursday July 18th in Melbourne at the iconic MCG, a venue we last visited in 2017.

Continuing our theme: Towards 2030, the conference will feature an exciting line-up of speakers on critical industry issues such as AI in Ag, attracting women to the workplace, effective marketing strategies, personal financial planning and more. Plus, we will have our regular economic update from Westpac’s Justin Smirk and the state of industry report from Kynetec.

Tickets are now on sale at the TMA website