The latest release of ACT’s For-Hire Trucking Index, showed August volume flat and productivity down, with the Supply-Demand Balance and capacity rising marginally.
The ACT For-Hire Trucking Index is a monthly survey of for-hire trucking service providers. ACT Research converts responses into diffusion indexes, where the neutral or flat activity level is 50. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are a for-hire executive interested in participating. In return, participants receive a detailed monthly analysis of the survey data, including Volumes, Freight Rates, Driver Availability, Capacity, Productivity and Purchasing Intentions, plus a complimentary copy of ACT’s Transportation Digest report.
Kenny Vieth, President & Senior Analyst at ACT Research, commented, “While Volume Index flatness m/m reflects the difficult freight environment, August’s number remains above the June/Q2 dip and reflects diminished but wage-supported underlying economic conditions.”
He noted, “Fleet productivity/utilization declined 7.0 points m/m, to 47.6 in August (SA), as the lower volume freight market increases inefficiency. Downward pressure on freight volumes related to inflation and interest rates, recovering equipment production, and still-rising driver populations suggest that fleet utilization is likely to be choppy across coming quarters.”
Regarding supply and demand, Vieth said, “While volumes were up incrementally this month, the reading still reflects a loose trucking market and a late stage in the freight cycle. Freight volumes are not in significant downturn, but have certainly stagnated since Q1, whereas capacity, which always lags the cycle, is still growing. With capacity growth set to continue amid flattish industry volumes, the looser environment is likely to persist, even as volumes ramp into peak freight season in the coming months.”
The ACT Freight Forecast provides forecasts for spot truckload rates by trailer type for four to six quarters and truck volumes and contract rates for three years for the truckload, less-than-truckload and intermodal segments of the transportation industry. In 2019, the average accuracy of the report’s truckload spot rate forecasts was 98%. The ACT Research Freight Forecast uses equipment capacity modeling and the firm’s economics expertise to provide unprecedented visibility for the future of freight rates, helping businesses in transportation and logistics management plan for the future with confidence.
ACT Research is recognized as the leading publisher of commercial vehicle truck, trailer, and bus industry data, market analysis and forecasts for the North America and China markets. ACT’s analytical services are used by all major North American truck and trailer manufacturers and their suppliers, as well as banking and investment companies. ACT Research is a contributor to the Blue Chip Economic Indicators and a member of the Wall Street Journal Economic Forecast Panel. ACT Research executives have received peer recognition, including election to the Board of Directors of the National Association for Business Economics, appointment as Consulting Economist to the National Private Truck Council, and the Lawrence R. Klein Award for Blue Chip Economic Indicators’ Most Accurate Economic Forecast over a four-year period. ACT Research senior staff members have earned accolades including Chicago Federal Reserve Automotive Outlook Symposium Best Overall Forecast, Wall Street Journal Top Economic Outlook, and USA Today Top 10 Economic Forecasters. More information can be found at www.actresearch.net.
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