Used scissor, boom prices skyrocket in U.S.

By Lindsey Anderson20 September 2021

The September Market Trends Report from Ritchie Bros. shows an overall decline in the total number of boom and scissor lifts sold via auction in the U.S. compared to 2020 levels, however pricing for the equipment is up significantly.

In its report, Ritchie Bros. said high-usage and rental rates as well as OEM production delays contributed to the sharp decline in the total number of boom and scissor lifts sold, but “unprecedented demand” from the market has attributed to aerial equipment prices rising by 29%.

Over the past three months, Ritchie Bros. noted that scissor lift prices inflated 15%, while boom lifts and telescopic forklifts were both up 16%.

For the second quarter of 2021, scissor lift sales in the U.S. were down -33% at 1,000 units compared to last year’s 1,500 for Ritchie Bros., with the three months trailing (June through August) showing a greater decline of -57% at 740 units compared to last year’s 1,710.

Boom lift sales in the U.S. for Q2 were down -31% at 1,120 units from last year’s 1,630, Ritchie Bros. reported, with the three months trailing (June through August) showing a decrease of -58% at 840 units from 2,020 last year.

Despite these decreases, Ritchie Bros. said market demand for scissors in August was more than double over the same month last year, and for boom lifts, demand outpaced the prior year’s.

“We have seen sharp volume declines and strong demand for aerial equipment in 2021,” said Doug Olive, SVP of pricing for Ritchie Bros. “Buyers are paying a premium right now for aerial work platforms due to supply constraints, record-high rental rates and the amount of work available.”

Regionally, the top five buying regions for the North American market were: Texas, California, Alberta (Canada,) Florida and British Columbia (Canada.)

For scissor lifts, Ritchie Bros. reported top buyer locations consisting of Texas, Illinois and Florida, while boom lift buyers were most prominent in Pennsylvania, Texas and Florida.

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