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ACT Research For-Hire Trucking Index: Conditions Return to Trend in August

Posted by Jennifer McNealy on Sep 27, 2019 7:00:00 AM

For-Hire Volume Index 9-27-19

The latest release of ACT’s For-Hire Trucking Index, with August data, retrenched to contraction in all categories, after the large and partly anomalous improvement in July. The Volume Index pulled back to 48.0 in August, from 56.7 in July (SA). The August Pricing Index, at 47.1 (SA), also returned to negative territory, after stabilizing to 50.3 in July.

The ACT For-Hire Trucking Index is a monthly survey of mainly for-hire truckload service providers and some

animation (53)LTLs. ACT Research converts responses into diffusion indexes, where the neutral or flat level is 50. Please contact us at 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, Capacity, Productivity and Purchasing Intentions, plus a complimentary copy of our Transportation Digest report.

For-Hire Freight Rates 9-27-19Tim Denoyer, ACT Research’s Vice President and Senior Analyst commented, “While the strong consumer plus pre-tariff inventory building could still help volumes into the holidays, it appears inconsistent in the for-hire market, due in part to the weak manufacturing sector. We think the addition of private fleet capacity is also partly responsible. Our for-hire respondents have stopped adding capacity, yet retail tractor sales data tell us capacity is growing. This will likely keep peak season muted in the for-hire market, with seasonal strength still likely closer to the holidays.”

Regarding the Rate Index, Denoyer said, “The respite provided by the improved July volume environment appears to be dissipating. There is a capacity rebalancing story to unfold next year, which should eventually be positive for rates, but we’re not there yet. Because capacity additions are continuing, it’s probably too early to view this summer’s pickup as a green shoot of the next up-cycle.”

The ACT Freight Forecast provides forecasts for the direction of volumes and contract rates quarterly through 2020 with three years of annual forecasts for the truckload, less-than-truckload and intermodal segments of the transportation industry. For the truckload spot market, the report provides forecasts for the next twelve months. 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

ACT’s 62nd seminar is scheduled for February 11-13, 2020, and will feature trucker, electrification, and economic panels, as well as discussions on near-term demand of North American commercial vehicle markets and the pending impact of electrification on the market in the near future. A commercial vehicle database workshop is also being planned in conjunction with this semi-annual event.

For-Hire 09.27.19

Click below to: 

Access more information about  ACT’s Freight Forecast, U.S. Rate and Volume OUTLOOK

To learn more about other freight-related publications offered by ACT Research

See August's For-Hire Trucking Index Press Release 

Access In the News Page 

Access Tim Denoyer's Biography 

Access Seminar Information.


Topics: freight, transportation, logistics, shipping, ACT For-Hire Trucking Index, Press Releases, supply chain, trucking

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We're the leading publisher of industry data, market analysis, and economic forecasting services for the commercial vehicle and transportation industries.

2019 Lawrence R. Klein Award Winner: Most Accurate Economic Forecast 2015-2019

  Partner to LMC Automotive and the Chinese State Information Center

  Contributor to the Blue Chip Financial and Wall Street Journal Consensus Economic Forecast


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