In line with expectations, 2016 demand for farm machinery in Europe is set to end up with a drop. The outlook for 2017 does not look much better, with lower or at best stable demand expected for most agricultural machinery products.
Agricultural tractor sales in Europe in the first nine months of 2016 were 4.5% lower in comparison with the same period last year. However, the decline in Q3 was slowing down to -2,2% when compared to Q3 in 2015. Demand is particularly lower for mid-range tractors between 125hp and 250hp.
Demand for most other major agricultural machinery products declined in the CEMA countries as well in line with predictions. Combine harvester sales are expected to be down 13% in 2016, with drops observed in all CEMA countries. For 2017, the market will shrink further. Particularly in France, a significant reduction is expected.
A similar decrease of 10% is seen in the forage harvester market in 2016. Again, the Spanish market was the best performer. From the other countries only the Belgian market grew and the Italian market stabilised. It is expected that demand will stabilise in 2017 with only minor rates of growth or decline in the different CEMA markets.
The decrease for balers was rather limited at 2.4%. Demand in all countries was stable or weakened only marginally. A slightly higher decline is forecasted for 2017.
In the UK registrations of agricultural tractors in November were 4.8% down year-on-year at 597 units. The eleven month total therefore stands at 10,087 units, 1.6% less than for the same period of 2015. The likelihood is that the full year total will come close to 10,500 units.