By Doug Graves
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – His real name is Gary Peterson, but most know him as “Machinery Pete.” He is a widely sought-out speaker who regularly presents to farmer, dealer, auctioneer and investor audiences. He will be presenting at this year’s National Farm Machinery Show on Feb. 16 at 10 a.m. in South Wing B105.
“I deal in all types of farm and construction equipment, literally anything that’s sold at auction, from a one year-old tractor to a post hold digger,” he said. “My aim is to give the pulse of farm equipment.”
Peterson has been researching and tracking machinery auction prices since 1989. With more than 25 years of experience in the machinery business, “Machinery Pete” will give attendees at this year’s show a comprehensive look at used farm equipment.
“The question now is ‘what’s not hot,’ and that’s a short list,” Peterson said, “because everything right every piece of used farm machinery is on fire. I’ve been tracking prices now for 33 years and nothing’s as hot as it is right now for a lot of reasons.”
According to Peterson, any good equipment is worth a lot more than it used to be.
“And that’s across the board,” Peterson added. “There are three drivers to all this. First, farm income has been pretty good the past two-plus years, and that means farmers have more money. Second, what’s happening to new equipment and the supply chain mess coming out of the pandemic, at least as far as farm equipment, has not fixed itself. Things have settled down on the automobile side and there’s more product on the lot, but not so with farm equipment. If you want to buy a new planter you can’t, because those are all gone. They’re sold out. That pushed people into the used market.”
Peterson said the third factor is that used inventory levels with late model equipment are the lowest it’s ever been.
“For example, if you look at high horsepower used tractors for sale, our data shows compared to three years ago there were 79.3 percent fewer five-year-old tractors for sale,” he said. “If you’re looking for that five-year-old tractor and one shows up at auction you’ll find that the price is incredible.”
Peterson, who began presenting at NFMS since 2010, will be on hand to field any question from attendees. He will give a general market update on equipment, from the front line to the used market. He will discuss pricing trends, availability, volume and talk about many different kinds of equipment. He will give best-practice tips for all farmers.
“It used to really matter where a piece of equipment or a tractor sold and it just doesn’t matter right now,” Peterson said. “If it’s in good condition, it doesn’t matter if it’s east, west, north or south, it’s bringing more money.”
Peterson projects that 2023 will continue to see strong buyer demand for used equipment in good condition.
Peterson is considered the most trusted source for information about used farm equipment. He has built a network of 1,000 regional auctioneers, 600 ag lenders, 2,000 implement dealers and thousands of farmers throughout the U.S. and Canada. He has complied more than 600,000 auction prices on all types of used farm and construction equipment sold throughout North America.