ACT Research: U.S. Trailer Net Orders Post Another Significant Improvement in August

August net US trailer orders of 28,139 units were a significant improvement (up 49%) from July’s uptick and well above August 2019’s level (up 160%). Before accounting for cancellations, new orders of 29k units were up 46% versus July and 96% better year-over-year, according to this month’s issue of ACT Research’s State of the Industry: U.S. Trailer Report.

Trailer Graph 9-18-20

ACT Research’s State of the Industry: U.S. Trailers report provides a monthly review of the current US trailer market statistics, as well as trailer OEM build plans and market indicators divided by all major trailer types, including backlogs, build, inventory, new orders, cancellations, net orders, and factory shipments. It is accompanied by a database that gives historical information from 1996 to the present, as well as a ready-to-use graph packet, to allow organizations in the trailer production supply chain, and those following the investment value of trailers and trailer OEMs and suppliers, to better understand the market.

“Conversations in recent months have indicated a change in fleet perspective, frequently phrased as more requests for quotes, ongoing negotiations, or a simple statement that ‘the phone is ringing a lot more lately’,” said Frank Maly, Director–CV Transportation Analysis and Research at ACT Research. He added, “That shift started in late June, and we saw a minor gain in orders in July.”

Used 9_18_20 (1)

Maly continued, “However, it’s still not all sunshine, as August’s orders included a substantial amount of large fleet demand, with strong e-commerce support, which bodes well for dry vans and reefers, but provides minimal benefit for vocational categories.” He commented, “With large fleets seeing better volumes and rates, they may be moving with a more bullish perspective than we perceive, and while trailer OEMS welcome the interest, they are wondering if the recent order strength has ‘legs’.”

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

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