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Forklift Prices Set to Rise 3% Annually

March 31, 2014
Industry demand and rising steel prices are the primary drivers.

With steel prices forecast to increase at an annualized rate of 2.2% over the next three years and construction and industrial activity projected to remain strong, buyers are expected to encounter higher prices for all steel-based products heading into 2017, according to a report from IBISWorld, a procurement research firm. The researchers identified five key products that will likely undergo accelerated price growth over the next three years due to rising steel prices: forklifts, elevators, security wire fencing, nails and building demolition machinery.

Forklifts are used in all industries, and with the industrial production index forecast to increase at an annualized rate of 3.0% from 2014 to 2017, stronger demand for forklifts will result in higher prices. Steel prices will also play a role in higher forklift prices in the coming years, IBISWorld predicts. Steel is the primary input used in forklift manufacturing, accounting for an estimated 63.0% of the average forklift manufacturer’s total purchase costs.

“As such, higher demand and higher production costs will accelerate growth in forklift prices at an annualized rate of 3.2% in the three years to 2017, compared with 2.9% annualized growth over the past three years,” the researchers state.

Buyers can avoid paying higher prices down the road by making their forklift purchases now, they add. However, if that is not possible, they offer other ways to mitigate the effect of higher prices. For example, buyers can purchase items in bulk to score a lower cost per unit. Buyers might also consider buying used forklifts, which run about half the cost of new units, they conclude.

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