Winter sales declines not a cause for much concern, advises Info-Link

MIAMI – After steady gains through the summer months, the Info-Link Technologies November and December Bellwether Reports have seen improvement fall off in some categories; however, the company cautions against reading too much into what it calls downward “blips.”

“We are not overly concerned by the apparent drop in fourth quarter sales,” the company told Boating Industry. “Boat sales in November and December are relatively insignificant and occur primarily in warmer weather areas such as Florida and Southern California, both of which have experienced above average declines this past year. Consequently, changes in short-term year-over-year sales appear more pronounced in the winter months.”

The company’s rolling graphs of year-over-year changes, which have been updated through December, can be viewed at:

In the latest report, unit sales of powerboats 15 feet in length and above were down about 29 percent during the 12-month period ended Dec. 31.

Within the outboard boat segment, unit sales were down about 26 percent during the same period, while the sterndrive/jet boat segment sales were down about 32 percent, the personal watercraft segment was down about 27 percent, the outboard sportfishing segment was down about 27 percent and the ski boat segment was down about 30 percent.

The bellwether report is based on new U.S. boat registrations in geographically dispersed states representing roughly half of the U.S. boat market.

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