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PWC, ski boats continue surge as boat sales rise in bellwether states

By By Jonathan Sweet

The personal watercraft and ski boat segments continue to show very strong growth, leading to powerboat sales more than 10 percent above 2013 numbers.

That’s according to the latest Info-Link Bellwether report, which tracks boat sales across the country based on new U.S. boat registrations. Bellwether states are geographically dispersed states representing roughly half of the US boat market (varies by market segment and time of year).

Every category except sterndrive/jet was up compared to a year earlier for the 12 months ending in June 2014 in the bellwether states. But even those sterndrive sales – down about 3 percent – are much improved from the 15 percent declines seen at the end of 2013 and in early 2014.

PWC sales were up nearly 30 percent year-over-year, showing strong growth for the third month in a row. Ski boat sales were up just less than 25 percent for the year, continuing a nearly two-year growth trajectory.

The outboard and sport fish segments have continued to hold steady at year-over-year growth between 10 and 15 percent for the last several months as well.

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