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FTR’s Trucking Conditions Index for May Unchanged and Remains in a Mid-Positive Range

FTR’s Trucking Conditions Index (TCI) for May basically remained unchanged from April at a positive reading of 7.01. As detailed in the July issue of the Trucking Update, FTR notes that the spot rate market is a strong indicator that conditions for trucking companies are on the upswing with active truck utilization at just below 100%.  Spot market volumes and pricing have been up y/y for several months, although contract market prices are still weak, before fuel adjustments.  The freight environment in 2017 remains strong, although economic conditions are fluctuating enough that freight growth could weaken.  If growth does slow, that may mitigate the potential for critical capacity issues with the onset of ELD implementation at the end of the year.


FTR Reports Final Net Trailer Orders For June Were Above Expectations at 18,900 Units

FTR reports final June net trailer orders at 18,900 units, rebounding from May with a m/m improvement of 12% and a 58% increase over June 2016 orders.  The June activity was above expectations, with most segments moderately exceeding their May totals.  Trailers orders have now totaled 261,000 units over the past twelve months.  Production rose a surprisingly 5% from May primarily in the dry and refrigerated van sectors reducing the overall backlog by 6%.


FTR’s Noël Perry Expands Economic Analysis for

FTR and have announced that Noël Perry, Partner at FTR, will lead the economic analysis for, assuming the additional role of chief economist for the industry’s leading load board and technology company.


Automotive World | Transfix, FTR join Automotive World Future of Freight Webinar

Drew McElroy, Chief Executive at Transfix and Eric Starks, Chairman and Chief Executive at FTR, will join an online panel discussion hosted by Automotive World on the future of truck freight.


Freight Waves | Amazon’s Whole Foods Purchase Increases Its Distribution Channels

“Amazon will eventually be moving most of its freight in dedicated networks through local distribution points that have the option of self pickup,” Noel Perry, truck and transportation expert with FTR Intel, told FreightWaves. “This will reduce parcel volume [and] Whole foods will be an early example of this. It is good for the customers in that it reduces dependence on expansive parcel shipping. [Whether] it's good for industry participants depends on one's point of view.”


Wall Street Journal | Package-Delivery Jobs Rise as More Consumers Shop Online

Transportation companies pulling out of a prolonged freight-market slump are still struggling to align capacity with demand. “Trucking should be expanding soon because things are getting tight,” said Noel Perry, Partner with FTR.


FTR Reports Class 8 Orders Rebound in June at 17,600 Units

FTR releases preliminary Class 8 net orders for June at 17,600 units, a month over month improvement of 7% and 38% better than a year ago.  Class 8 orders had surprisingly retreated in May, but June’s bounce back activity is more in line with expectations.  It is assumed that most of the June orders are for Q4 delivery enabling the OEM’s to maintain their current build rates throughout the year. This would result in full year numbers in line with FTR’s 2017 forecast.  The Class 8 market continues to perform at a steady pace and is consistent with summer’s seasonal trends.  Total orders for the past twelve months have totaled 216,000 units.


Modern Materials Handling | Fate of Proposed Speed Limiter Rule Remains Less than Certain

At the FTR conference in Indianapolis last September, Schneider CEO Mark Rourke said that his company’s fleet has been utilizing speed limiters for 7 years, while seeing an increase in fuel economy and a reduction in crashes. To be sure, Schneider is not the only example of a large carrier seeing multiple benefits of speed limiters.