MILWAUKEE — Overall U.S. sales of tractors and combines continued to post strong numbers, led by self-propelled combines and 4-wheel-drive tractors, according to the July 2018 report from the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM).
July U.S. sales of self-propelled combines gained 37 percent compared to last year, with year-to-date growth of nearly 24 percent compared to last-year’s January-July numbers.
U.S. sales of 4-wheel-drive tractors jumped 77.5 percent for July compared to July 2017, and grew nearly 13 percent year-to-date over January-July 2017.
For July, total U.S. sales of 2-wheel drive tractors grew 12 percent over last year. Sales in the 100-plus HP category led the way with 31-percent growth, followed by gains of 16 percent for under-40 HP tractors, and a dip of 1.5 percent for the 40-100 HP category.
For January-July 2018, all categories of 2-wheel drive tractors were still positive compared to 2017 YTD: under-40 HP tractors grew 9.5 percent, 40-100 HP 2-wheel drive tractors increased 2.5 percent and 100-plus HP 2-wheel drive tractors gained 5 percent.
“Seven months into the year, we’re still looking at favorable numbers. Surveys of our membership show a good majority feel the market has been strong this year but are beginning to have concerns about the second half of the year. Tariffs and trade continue to dominate the conversation, with the lingering uncertainty of their impact on current positive market performance,” said Curt Blades, AEM senior vice president, AG services.
“While sales of small equipment such as less than 40 HP tractors continue their growth trends over the last few years that had made them a bright spot, they have been joined by a softer upward movement started in 2017 for the larger production ag equipment such as 100+ HP 2WD tractors, 4WD tractors and self-propelled combines,” said Benjamin Duyck, AEM director, market intelligence.