buying: Carvana's Getting Pummeled On Wall Street. If Only We Could've Seen This Coming

How to buy your first car

  How to buy your first car Find out what you need to research ahead of time, and how to stay one step ahead of the dealer.The key to a successful buy is to first determine how much you can afford. Your credit score, monthly income and the type of car you want should all factor into this decision. The key is to strike a balance between fitting your budget and finding a car right for your needs.

Used-car retailer Carvana has taken a beating on Wall Street recently, including Monday when trading was halted due to a turbocharged number of shares trading hands.

An eight story car vending machine, operated by the online used car dealer Carvana, that dispenses purchased cars to customers is seen in Huntington Beach, California on August 16, 2019. - The fully automated, special coin-operated Car Vending Machine holds up to 30 vehicles and the company says it offers a novel pick-up experience for cars purchased on their website. (Photo by Mark RALSTON / AFP)    (Photo credit should read MARK RALSTON/AFP via Getty Images) © Getty Images An eight story car vending machine, operated by the online used car dealer Carvana, that dispenses purchased cars to customers is seen in Huntington Beach, California on August 16, 2019. - The fully automated, special coin-operated Car Vending Machine holds up to 30 vehicles and the company says it offers a novel pick-up experience for cars purchased on their website. (Photo by Mark RALSTON / AFP) (Photo credit should read MARK RALSTON/AFP via Getty Images)

By midday Monday, Carvana was trading around $7.50 per share—up from its morning low of around $7.10, but far from its Aug. 15, 2021, peak of more than $376. CNBC pointed out that shares were down by nearly 25 percent Monday morning, which prompted the trading timeout. Since last year, Carvana has had a bumpy ride: regulators have revoked licenses to operate in states such as Michigan and Pennsylvania due to delayed registrations, execs have reported lower-than-expected revenue, and a cooling economy has all influenced the slumping stock.

Phil Collins and Genesis colleagues Sell Music Rights

 Phil Collins and Genesis colleagues Sell Music Rights The British singer Phil Collins (71) and his Genesis colleagues, guitarist Mike Rutherford (71) and keyboardist Tony Banks (72), sell part of their music rights to the US company Concord . © Rebecca Blackwell/AP/dpa singer Phil Collins at a appearance in Mexico.

But there’s more. Spurned by low inventory and high prices, used car shoppers now have another reason to delay their purchase: rising borrowing costs. Last week, the Fed hiked interest rates again, which was the third rate increase in the past year and another attempt to cool inflation in the U.S. That’s made used cars that were already at record highs even less desirable to buyers whose spending power was effectively kneecapped by higher borrowing costs.

In response, used car prices have fallen for five straight months, according to Automotive News, which means it’ll be even harder for conglomerate dealers such as Carvana to make money for investors. All of the above would be considered “headwinds” to a softening market for used cars for months to come, with the eventual tailwinds looking something along the lines of a glut of cars no one wants to buy, aging and less efficient cars on the road for longer, a depressed automotive sector that employs hundreds of thousands of Americans, and/or layoffs. Or, in two more words: Deepening recession.

It's almost as if someone should've told dealers long ago that hiking prices and bilking buyers with exorbitantly priced cars wasn't a recipe for long-term success.

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