As the market begins to show signs of faltering, Shepherd is urging fleet chiefs to be sensible and lower reserves if they want to see cars sold successfully. He said: 'If you accept that the market has declined and adjust reserves accordingly, then I see no reason why conversion figures should not remain high.'
Shepherd's comments were underlined by CAP Black Book editor Simon Goldthorpe, who said: 'The stock is in place for buyers to come out over the next six weeks but they're not in a mad rush.' Goldthorpe added that a readjustment of stock was important. 'The market is going to come down to a realistic level as more stock becomes available,' he said. 'Recently the market has been bullish and over the next six weeks buyers could hang back. But the used car market is not going to go over the edge of the cliff.'
Adrian Rushmore, managing editor of Glass's Guide, said: 'The market has already shown the first few tentative signs with conversion rate down 5%.' He added that there was less urgency for the car trade to acquire stock because retail demand was slightly fading. He said: 'We would normally expect the market to show signs of turning at this time of year. And the next six weeks will see even less urgency for buyers to go and find stock. But whatever happens this year it will be less severe than last year's collapse.'