Retail trends in the boating industry accelerated in March, with 50% of dealers reporting growth versus 28% who said they had declines in sales, according to a new survey.
“The overall sales climate appears to be improving compared to the past six months,” wrote one dealer responding to the survey conducted by Baird Research in conjunction with the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas and Trade Only Today.
Another dealer mentioned that boat shows have been working, but “results seem to come 30 to 90 days later,” wrote Baird in the monthly Pulse Report.
Still, dealers are growing more cautious about a potential slowdown, prompting dealer sentiment about current conditions to tick down from 67 to 66, and the three- to five-year outlook dropped to 53 from 56 in February.
Those readings are still well above the 53 evaluation on current conditions in January and the long-term outlook rating of 42 in December — each of those marked the most pessimistic outlooks in the more than five-year history of the survey. (In early 2014, the dealer sentiment rating was 54.)
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