The aircraft market, or when we talk about specific aircraft models a better term might be “micro market” is fascinating to watch. It is a combination of real data points such as how many aircraft are available or what the last one sold for... but it’s also driven by a host of external factors that include the stock market, the consumer confidence index, the direction the wind is blowing and a whole lot of community specific rumors! 

I think that sellers perceive a lack of buyers when that usually isn’t the case, there are always buyers, and airplanes are selling every month. I’ll hear “this market has cooled off and then I’ll check and see that X airplanes have sold in the last 60 days. Plus, when you look at the data provided by most companies it is “closed airplanes” not “sold airplanes” I am much more interested in what went under contract and at what price than I am what closed 45 days later! These markets change drastically and quickly... info that is 45 days old is dead to me. In most cases it isn’t a lack of buyers but that “your” potential buyer just bought someone else’s airplane. 

Sorry, I digress! Back to the question, the turbine market does seem to have cooled a little bit, a lot of airplanes have sold this year and anyone who intended to close by year end probably has an airplane under contract. 

Again, I say “seems” because it is largely a perception, the (micro) markets we are currently working are still hot, and there are other buyers out there. Thankfully we are seeing higher numbers of good options in some models. The late model B200 market is a good example, earlier this year it was tight... nothing to buy. I would have described the B200 market as “picked over” but here we are six months later and we have another B200 client, the market is different and we are finding several options in our price range. In one case we made an offer, the seller countered too high, so we moved on. There’s options, largely because so many people either have or will be replacing their B200 with something else. 

Clutter... lots of clutter. The late model B200 market is a good example, there are several airplanes that are nice, but priced $200 - $300k over market! There’s a nice airplane with two incidents of major damage history that seems to be priced cheap... those airplanes sit on the market completely skewing any market data that isn’t based on actual research. 

My summary is the overall market that has been so hot, has cooled a little bit. It’s winter, it’s the holidays, it’s the price of oil... or widgets... who knows. BUT... that is a general statement, we are working with a couple of very tight... red hot markets right now and just as a seller can’t afford to miss a buyer... as buyers we can’t afford to miss the right airplane. To know it’s right and what to pay, we have to know that micro market very well and be prepared to strike when the opportunity presents itself.