Less than a month after the U.S. presidential election, one thing is abundantly clear—virtually everyone got virtually everything it was possible to predict wrong. Nearly every reputable economist predicted a sizable Dow and S&P 500 sell-off. And while one did occur in after-hours trading as the results of the election crystalized, the U.S. equities markets quickly warmed to the idea of President Donald J. Trump. The American collector car market also stands a good chance of doing the same thing.
Barrett-Jackson and Russo and Steele’s Scottsdale sales, and Mecum’s Kissimmee event will be the first 2017 auctions significantly focused on American muscle cars. I would be shocked if these three sales weren’t extremely successful. They might even bump up against their own record numbers for Scottsdale.
Here’s why: Based on purely anecdotal observations, I’d wager that the American muscle car market skews heavily towards 50-plus years olds who are white, male and somewhat conservative. Given that this demographic came out solidly for Trump, many of the players in the muscle car market are likely feeling optimistic about the election’s results. At the very least, they know that they’re not likely to see a tax increase from this administration. This optimism may well translate into a willingness to spend.
Past leaps in the muscle car market have been fueled at least in part by individuals who made their money in the energy and building sectors. With President-Elect Trump’s recent pronouncements of heavy infrastructure spending and removal of regulations on energy producers, business owners and employees of companies involved in these industries are likely to believe that they’re staring some very good times in the face.
According to Brian Rabold, Hagerty’s VP of Valuation Services, “If nothing else, the uncertainty of who will lead the country for the next four years has passed and many enthusiasts will likely be back to business as usual by January.”
Coupled with an economy that’s near full employment, solid real estate and stock markets, and interest rates that are still low, it could be the makings of a perfect storm in Scottsdale and Kissimmee, assuming the right inventory is there, (which it almost certainly will be). Stay tuned.