JUN 03rd 2015

Edward Legge ‑ Voting With Their Wallets

Have you told people who you voted for in the general election? Both the Scottish referendum and the Westminster elections produced a result that not everyone might have predicted and this was because there were some very vocal proponents for the losing sides. I’m sure you will have seen articles in the media about the silent majority who quietly went to polling stations with their political colours flying firmly under their hats while an enthusiastic and motivated minority made it their business to force their ideologies on anyone who might listen and plenty who didn’t. Since then we’ve heard all manner of insults being hurled at the those who backed the winners as if they are traitors to a high-minded ideology that, let’s face it, not everyone agrees with.

It’s not dissimilar in the classic car world. Voicing the ‘wrong’ opinion on the state of the classic car market can upset people, particularly some of those who make a living from the classic cars – and for those who believe that car prices should remain high it is a case of ‘loose lips sink ships’ – in this case the ship in question being the SS Profit.

‘Away from the politics, it looks like people may be beginning to vote with whatever it is that really determines car prices.’

Just like the election TV coverage, the media polls people from the classic car world to gauge sentiment and predict the way that wallets will vote – we even have our own classic car Swingometer in the form of the Hagerty Market Index. But, just like the polls, most do not always represent an accurate or entirely honest view of public sentiment. The classic car media continues to steadfastly believe that the best way to predict the future for classic car prices is to ask the people who are selling them where they think prices are going or refer to crazy auction results. Set the obvious bias aside for one moment and ask yourself if you would want to be the person who burst the balloon on behalf of all your classic car-selling peers – they are facing the same dilemma as a politician being asked direct questions by John Humphrys; damn and be damned. Cue talk of investment potential, buoyancy, supply and demand and a global market

However, away from the politics, it looks like people may be beginning to vote with whatever it is that really determines car prices. While the media talk up the newsworthy auction results and the believers lap it up, inside the voting booths many buyers are beginning to tick the box marked: ’It simply isn’t worth that much’ and going with their instinct – and that’s straight from the horse’s mouth. The speculators are still vocal, and telling anyone within earshot that prices are still on the up, but, just like the recent elections, it looks like the silent majority may well have their say when it comes to making the market – hopefully that will be good for us all.

Edward Legge is Commercial Director at www.classicandsportsfinance.com

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