Chart of the week: the classic car boom is over

The market for classic cars in the US seems to be softening, according to data from Hagerty, a specialist insurance firm. The chart above shows Hagerty’s index of the volumes and values of collector cars traded, adjusted for inflation. The market grew strongly in the years following the financial crisis, as the price of classic cars increased along with other assets. However, the market appears to have peaked in September 2015. Prices for high-end cars seem to be weakening more significantly, while demand for more affordable cars is holding up better, according to Hagerty.


“One of the oddities of the tax system is that we stop paying 12% national insurance on our earnings once we reach state pension age… NI, when first set up, was a system of insurance against illness and unemployment. If NI is supposed to help fund the NHS and care services, there is no reason why pensioners… shouldn’t be paying it, albeit at a reduced rate. Making pensioners pay NI will spread the burden of care costs… The alternative is to substantially raise inheritance tax. There is no better way to tax the extraordinary rise in house prices than to take a cut of it once their occupants have passed away… [But] raising death duties is sadly a political non-starter.”

Patrick Collinson, The Guardian

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