Tractor sales up again in April | My Machinery
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Tractor sales up again in April

Tractor sales across Australia continued to surge in April on the back of a strong first quarter of the year where delivery figures hit record levels. Data released by the Tractor and Machinery Association of Australia shows a hefty increase in sales of tractors over 150kW (200hp) in April and a surge in demand from farmers in Western Australia gearing up for the tillage and seeding season. Overall the market was up 20 per cent on the same time last year with 864 tractors delivered. Agriview industry analyst Alan Kirsten said the seasonal push from the broadacre sector was the key to the month’s sound results. “In the under 40hp (30kW) sector, the market was up 5pc, in the 40 to 100hp (30kW to 75kW) it was up 11pc and the 100 to 200hp (75kW to 150kw) was up 17pc, but the 200hp-plus (150kW plus) sector was up 74pc,” Mr Kirsten said. “That’s the driver for the month in terms of growth. “At this time of year you would expect sales to be active in that part of the market – it’s the delivery of all the broadacre machinery to go in for the planting season. “It’s certainly a better result than last year and a lot of that was due to a lift in Western Australia.” Around the States, Queensland was up 9pc on last year, due to a 40pc lift in the over-75kW market. NSW was up 10pc thanks to a 40pc lift in the compact market. Victoria was up 9pc, due to a 57pc lift in over-75kW tractors, while Tasmania was up 108pc. In Tasmania, the volumes are low, but that rise refers to a pretty strong 30kW to 75kW sector. South Australia was up 6pc, with growth right across the power groups, but Western Australia was up 107pc. “That was a good result given the market has been pretty sluggish for a while since the drought of a couple of years ago,” Mr Kirsten said. “The rise in WA was due to a 400pc lift over 200hp (over 175kW) and that’s the broadacre tractors for the tillage and seeding season. “That strong demand coming forward in WA is a good sign.” Mr Kirsten said the under-30kW market had held up well, but demand had been sluggish in the past six weeks. “I’d expect that market to slow over the next couple of months, but then to rebound,” he said. “In the middle ground, it’s a pretty reasonable result, but that result in the over-200hp (over 175kW) was very welcome. “The numbers, I’d suggest, are not surprising, though I am a little surprised at the strength in WA given they have been in drought.” Mr Kirsten said that, while the sales picture for tractors was looking bright, demand for other lines was fairly flat. “You’d have to say demand is pretty subdued at the moment for most other product lines – in the combines, balers, even the tillage and seeding equipment, demand has been very slow,” he said. “I was expecting that situation to be a little better than it is, particularly for the combines, but the numbers are very small as it’s well out of season. “However, the forward orders the industry would have expected haven’t been there. I think the current high wheat price, the high stocks on-farm and high world stocks are depressing demand for new combine harvesters. “The baler market is subdued and at a low level and demand for early orders is low. That continues a pretty depressed hay tools market for the past two or three years.”

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