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Car finance volumes fall in May as registrations dip

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Consumer car finance new business volumes fell by 3% in May compared with the same month in the previous year, according to the latest figures from the Finance & Leasing Association (FLA).

The value of new business fell by 1% during the same period (see table below).

Geraldine Kilkelly, head of research and chief economist at the FLA, said “The POS consumer car finance market reported new business volumes of almost 1.1 million in the first five months of 2019, only 1% lower than in the same period in 2018.”

“We continue to expect broadly stable new business volumes in 2019 as a whole.  Consumer confidence about their own personal finances remains relatively strong, supported by a resilient labour market and low interest rate environment.”

The new car market led to the largest decline in May’s figures with a 4% drop in the number of new cars financed. This correlates with new car registrations, which were down 4.6% in the same month, according to the SMMT.

The SMMT said that the fall reflects continued uncertainty over diesel and clean air zones as well as the removal of incentives for plug-in hybrid vehicles.

The value of consumer used car finance new business in May was a similar level to the same month in 2018, while new business volumes fell by 3%.

This reflects the relative flat-line of the used car market seen in the first quarter of 2019.

 

Cars bought on finance by consumers through dealerships

 

 

New business

May 2019

% change on prev. year

3 months to May 2019

% change on prev. year

12 months to May 2019

% change on prev. year

New cars

 

 

 

 

 

 

Value of advances (£m)

1,591

-1

6,494

-3

19,362

0

Number of cars

74,762

-4

311,710

-5

944,785

-3

Used cars

 

 

 

 

 

 

Value of advances (£m)

1,563

0

4,822

+4

17,968

+8

Number of cars

128,712

-3

393,417

+1

1,467,835

+3

Total cars

 

 

 

 

 

 

Value of advances (£m)

3,154

-1

11,316

0

37,330

+4

Number of cars

203,474

-3

705,127

-2

2,412,620

+1

 

Cars bought on finance by businesses

 

 

 

 

New business

May 2019

% change on prev. year

3 months to May 2019

% change on prev. year

12 months to May 2019

% change on prev. year

New cars

 

 

 

 

 

 

Number of cars

39,135

-2

126,309

-3

397,772

-10

Used cars

 

 

 

 

 

 

Number of cars

4,426

+13

15,207

-3

60,384

+4

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