ACT Research: Class 8 Tractor Dashboard Unchanged in May, Still Downbeat

According to ACT Research’s recently released Transportation Digest, the top line on the Class 8 Tractor Dashboard was unchanged in May, the third month of moderately downbeat readings.

The report, which combines proprietary ACT data and analysis from a wide variety of sources, paints a

 comprehensive picture of trends impacting transportation and commercial vehicle markets. This monthly report is designed as a quick look at transportation insights for use by fleet and trucking executives, reviewing top-level considerations such as for-hire indices, freight, heavy and medium duty segments, the US trailer market, used truck sales information, and an overview of the US macro economy.

ACT Research Tractor Dashboad

“Our interpretation of the recent Tractor Dashboard reading is a gradual erosion of Class 8 market demand into the second half of 2022, but no ‘spiral down’ and certainly not a ‘cliff event’,” said Kenny Vieth, ACT’s President and Senior Analyst. He continued, “With a recession in 2023 now our base case, we think the dashboard reading, while negative, still suggests a better outcome for Class 8 than was the case in our last two recessions [COVID 2020 and the 2008-09 Great Recession], as supply constraints have kept the industry from overbuilding in the leadup to the downturn.”

When asked about the take-away, Vieth concluded, “Disaggregating the dashboard, we see the most pronounced adverse trends in the freight segment, with four of five indicators in negative territory. The readings from the economic and ACT State-of-the-Industry data sets are more of a mixed bag of positives, neutrals and negatives.” He also mentioned, “For readers who are new to this framework or want a refresh, we believe that the dashboard offers a three to six-month forward-looking metric for conditions in the tractor market.”

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.

ACT’s 67th Seminar is scheduled for August 23-25, 2022. The focus will be the potential impact of decarbonization and autonomous technology on commercial vehicles and on-highway transportation. Each event ACT shares its best-in-class data and forecast in presentations, as well as featuring guest speakers to dive into topics of interest for the benefit of attendees. The agenda includes key industry leaders, who will be announced at a later date. For more information about Seminar 67 Watts Under The Hood: Transportation Transformation, click here: https://www.actresearch.net/seminar-67/.

ACT Research recently completed POWER UP, a look at 7 global regions and more than 20 countries in a review of local regulations, infrastructure, and the impact on the adoption of battery and fuel cell electric commercial vehicles through 2040. This forecast is the first of its kind, a review of the decarbonization of commercial vehicles around the world. POWER UP is available now at https://www.actresearch.net/power-up/.

Additionally, ACT Research published an update to CHARGING FORWARD, a North American-centric battery and fuel cell electric vehicle adoption rate forecast, covering 23 vehicle applications, in Classes 4-8 commercial vehicles, through 2040. CHARGING FORWARD is considered by many industry leaders to be the apex of analysis and economic-based total cost of ownership modeling in the industry. And, it is now available for purchase at https://www.actresearch.net/electric-vehicles-charge/.

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