In what is usually the busiest period in the auction calendar, last month saw only 144 auctions held across the UK – the fewest number recorded in a September since 2006 (142). This had an obvious and marked effect on the overall monthly results – lots offered were down 11% on September 2017 to 3,378 lots whilst lots sold saw an even larger drop – down 17% to 2,382. Total auction revenues fell by almost 18% – an £80m drop in monetary terms and a stark realisation of the uncertain economic and political climate that the market is currently operating in.
Residential lots offered and sold fell by 13% and 18% respectively last month, with residential revenues shrinking by over 17% to £334m. The notable monthly falls had a significant impact on the figures for Q3, with lots sold down 9% and amount raised down 11% on the same quarter last year. The commercial sector saw a marginal increase in lots offered, from 422 to 437 lots, but 20 fewer lots sold resulting in a 67% sale rate. Commercial revenues also saw a major drop – down 21% to £37m, but as all the major London commercial auctioneers aren’t holding their first Autumn auction until this month (October) we’ll get a more accurate account of the sector in next month’s newsletter.