This is a guest post by Simon Wallan, Vice President, Sales – Ritchie Bros.
Every day you spend on the farm is spent consumed by the numbers that can make or break your operation: commodity prices, quotas, millimeters of rain, and more. You can speculate on soybean prices come harvest time, the number of pairs you’ll have come spring, and how many hours you’ll need to get all the work done. You’ve got these numbers figured out. What you might need help with is deciding when to sell or buy farm equipment.
Spring thaw in the used equipment market
In the last two weeks of March 2015, on the heels of a first quarter that saw lagging new farm equipment sales in Canada, Ritchie Bros. held our first unreserved public farm equipment auctions of 2015, selling everything from 4WD tractors to a cattle squeeze.
Even though the last frost in Alberta was two weeks away, it appeared that the used farm equipment market was heating up. Since then we’ve conducted more than 60 agriculture auctions across Canada, including complete farm sales and dealer inventory reductions. In general, pricing has remained steady year-over-year, and optimism has replaced concern.
Where to find used farm equipment pricing insight and information
With over 300 auctions each year and an inventory of thousands of farm equipment items, Ritchie Bros. is also knee deep in the numbers. Those numbers can give you the insight you need when deciding whether to add that second combine, purchase a more powerful tractor or sell the old silage truck. We also publish equipment selling prices on our website, rbauction.com, to help you estimate how much your equipment is worth.
2015 used farm equipment market trends
Based on equipment selling prices for Jan-June 2015 at our unreserved auctions in Canada, here are the trends we’ve noticed in the used farm equipment market.
Grain handling equipment – strong demand
This 2014 Unverferth 9250 1000± bushel grain cart sold for $39,000 at an unreserved auction in Stewart Valley, SK in March 2015.
Sales for grain handling equipment have been strong. If you are planning to buy newer grain handling equipment, there is a good selection of quality equipment available. If you are planning to sell newer grain handling equipment, conditions are favourable.
Tractors – strong demand
This 2013 Case IH Magnum 340 row crop MFWD tractor sold for $170,000 at an unreserved auction in Carberry, MB in June 2015.
Based on what we’ve seen for the first two quarters, demand for late-model tractors is increasing, with many farmers opting to invest in good-quality used equipment over new—particularly with the US exchange rate driving up the price of new equipment in Canada. Case IH and John Deere MFWD tractors are particularly popular, with 1,400+ being sold in the first half of the year at our Canadian auctions.
Livestock equipment – strong demand
This 2010 Supreme 700T feed wagon sold for $37,500 at an unreserved auction in Lethbridge, AB in March 2015.
Livestock equipment demand has been strong so far in 2015, thanks in part to higher beef prices and optimistic producers.
Combines – holding steady
This 2014 John Deere S690 combine sold for $365,000 at an unreserved auction in Melville, SK in April 2015.
We’ve sold hundreds of John Deere, Case IH, New Holland and other top name combines at our Canadian auctions so far in 2015. Demand and pricing for used combines has been holding steady relative to 2014.
Swathers – weaker demand
This 2014 Case IH WD 1903 Series II 40’ swather sold for $115,000 at an unreserved public auction in Swift Current, SK in March 2015.
If you want to add a swather to your operation, consider buying now. Demand for swathers seems to have weakened, which may be due to many farmers having purchased new swathers in the last five years, as more farmers than ever before are operating newer equipment fleets.
2015 outlook for the used farm equipment market
As long as growing conditions are favourable and livestock prices stay high, demand for used farm equipment should remain strong through 2015.
Help for farm equipment buyers and sellers
Established in 1958 in Kelowna, BC, Ritchie Bros. is the world’s largest auctioneer of equipment and trucks. Ritchie Bros. conducts regular unreserved public auctions at 44 auction sites worldwide—including Saskatoon, Grande Prairie, Edmonton and Lethbridge—as well as dozens of farm auctions across Canada each year. Ritchie Bros. auctions are open to the public and unreserved; every item sells to the highest bidder on auction day, with no minimum bids or reserve prices. Buyers participate in person and online.
If you are in the Lloydminster, AB area on June 30, check out our unreserved farm equipment auction:
And if you want to take advantage of favourable market conditions and sell surplus equipment, contact a Ritchie Bros. representative for help identifying good selling markets for your equipment.