The seemingly unsinkable aluminum pontoon market contributed what it could in November, but it wasn’t able to keep the recreational boat industry from experiencing a modest decline in sales, its first since the spring quarter.
According to Soundings Trade Only, sales in the main powerboat segments fell 1.5%, or 43 boats, to 2,794, and industrywide sales dropped 2.6%, or 106 boats, to 3,934, in 28 early-reporting states that represent about 64% of the national market, Statistical Surveys Inc. reported.
The industrywide drop was the first since June. Sales in the main segments, a group that consists of two aluminum and five fiberglass categories, fell for the first time since April.
Statistical Surveys national marine sales manager Ryan Kloppe said chilly weather contributed to the November decline.
“The weather turned pretty cold in November for most of the country,” he said.
November is traditionally a slow month for boat sales. The industry sold 5,069 boats industrywide in all 50 states in November 2012.
Florida was the November sales leader among the early-reporting states at 1,210 boats, followed by Texas (504), Louisiana (289), North Carolina (216) and Georgia (185).
Florida (1,109), Texas (569) and Louisiana (388) also led the sales list last year.
Rounding out the top 10 in November this year were California (183), Arizona (139), Michigan (136), South Carolina (126) and Tennessee (105).
Kloppe predicts that sales for all 50 states for the full year will be up about 6 percent in the main segments and 3 percent industrywide.
“We can consider that moderate growth, with momentum heading into 2014, where we can continue that growth,” he said.
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