Sharp rise in tractor sales

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UK registrations of agricultural tractors (over 50hp) in April were up sharply, reversing the trend of the first three months of the year.

At 1,606 machines, the total was up by more than a third on April 2018 and was the highest April figure since 2012.

Stephen Howarth, agricultural economist at the AEA, reports:

“Timing differences, associated with the AEA bringing the registration scheme in-house, may have exaggerated the rise. However, even allowing for that, there would still have been a noticeable year-on-year increase in April. In part, this may be due to manufacturers bringing machines into the country ahead of the original Brexit date, rather than risk delays at ports or extra costs which might have resulted if the UK had left the EU without a deal. Any machines involved would likely have been registered during April.

The rise in April brings the total number of machines registered in the year to date to 4,273, 4% more than in the first four months of last year. It remains to be seen whether the temporary factors mentioned above will balance out in the coming months. The market for compact tractors (50hp and under) remained subdued, however, with registrations in April down 32% at 99 units, and the total for the year to date down by nearly a quarter on the same period last year.”

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