Wholesale used vehicle prices on a mix, mileage, and seasonally adjusted basis increased for the sixth consecutive month in February. The Manheim Used Vehicle Value Index rose to a level of 110.3, up from 108.8 in January. Wholesale prices over the past year have risen 5.2% and have increased 7.7% from the April 2003 cyclical trough. The monthly gain in wholesale prices for February was 3.5% before the seasonal adjustment and 1.4% after statistically accounting for the normal seasonal improvement that occurs between January and February. The continuing improvement in wholesale prices is a reflection of the vibrant retail used vehicle market that is benefiting from a stronger labor market (especially in the mainstream demographic groups that underpin the used vehicle market), less pressure from new vehicle pricing, and the recent increase in tax refunds flowing back to consumers. The Manheim Used Vehicle Value Index is both seasonally adjusted and adjusted for changes in mix and mileage of vehicles sold. The monthly data is derived from vehicles sold at Manheim's 85 North American auctions.
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