The market of used car prices dropped 3.8 percent on average in March. BLS has estimated a decline nationally in used car prices, which remained 35 percent above the average of March 2021.

In the past year, used vehicle prices on average had climbed 30%.

That’s created many crazy situations where high-demand vehicles are selling for more than they did when they were new.

BLS estimated New England consumers saw prices overall rise 1.4 percent between February and March across all products and services it tracks. Prices in the region are up 7.4 percent from last year, below the overall U.S. increase of 8.5 percent.

“The market is very strange right now,” said Yurchenko. “Dealers need the inventory, so they are paying lots of money for their vehicles on the wholesale market.”

It all started in April and May of last year when U.S. automakers were forced to close factories for eight weeks to help stop the novel coronavirus from spreading. That cut production, limiting inventory even as demand remained surprisingly strong.

The lack of new vehicles and higher prices have sent more people into the used vehicle market, so demand is high there, too. Plus, rental car companies, normally a source of late-model used vehicles, are keeping their cars longer because they can’t get new ones.

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