Jim’s Blog: Time to Buy or Time to Sell?

Scottsdale 2015 is in the books, and with $291.3m in sales out of this year’s six auctions, it was a record-breaker. We’ll have complete results in the next issue of ACC, which were working on building right now.

In general, more cars came to auction, and those cars brought bigger overall totals in Arizona this year. Custom trucks seemed to be strong, with a handful of $30k and $40k sales, and with Hemi prices again on the move, we saw other Mopars see increases as well. A good example was an A12 Road Runner that made $165k at Barrett-Jackson — watch for a profile of that car in our next issue.

By far the biggest news of the week was the sale of the Ron Pratte Collection, which totaled $40.4m. And from that very public sale came the biggest question of the week — is it time to buy or time to sell?

This is a question that always pops up when collectors see a big-budget collection come to market. What made it different this time was the collection in question — Ron Pratte has been a long-time Barrett-Jackson buyer, and for the past few years, he’s been the man behind some of the company’s highest profile and most expensive sales, like the Super Snake, Futurliner, and more. To see all these cars come back to sale again caused a lot of bidders to wonder if Mr. Pratte knows something about the market that they don’t. I probably overheard a dozen people talking about it in Arizona over the course of my week there — and it came up at the ACC Seminar as well.

So I thought it would be interesting to hear what you have to say about it in ACC #20’s “Insiders View” section. Say you’ve got a nice ’70 Hemi ’Cuda that you’d like to sell. Is now the time to move it down the road, or would you hold it for a while longer to see if the market level rises higher? On the other hand, say you want to buy a Hemi ’Cuda. Would you act right now or wait six months? Why?

What if the car in question was a base-level ’68 Firebird or low-mile ’75 Chevrolet pickup? Would you treat those differently?

In general, are we looking at the top of the market, or is there a lot more upward movement in our future? Is it time to buy or time to sell? Let us know what you think in the comments below, or send us a note at comments@americancarcollector.com by Friday, January 30. Look for your responses in the next “Insiders View” section of ACC!