Orders & Indices


FTR’s Trucking Conditions Index for November Eases from October High

FTR’s Trucking Conditions Index (TCI) fell in November from the previous month’s record high. The November reading of 10.26 is still strong as rising freight rates continue to power robust trucking conditions. FTR expects the index to settle into single-digit positive readings through 2021, reflecting a healthy but more stable truck freight market.


FTR Reports Preliminary Trailer Orders Healthy Again in December at 43,700 Units

FTR reports that preliminary U.S. net trailer orders remained vibrant for the fourth consecutive month, totaling 43,700 units in December. December order activity was up 6% m/m and 155% y/y. Total trailer orders for 2020 totaled 297,000.
The order volume for Oct-Dec was the highest ever for a fourth quarter. Fleets continue to order dry and refrigerated vans in hefty quantities for delivery throughout 2021. Consumer-oriented freight growth continues to rise and should continue, pushed by the second government stimulus. Vocational trailer orders are still recovering but should improve as manufacturing grows. 


FTR Reports Preliminary North American Class 8 Net Orders for 2020 End on High Note with December Activity Remaining at Extremely High Level

FTR reports preliminary North American Class 8 net orders for December continued at an extremely high level at 52,100 units. December 2020 order activity was the fourth-highest ever and just 700 units fewer than November, up 169% over a year ago. Class 8 orders for 2020 totaled 283,000 units.

The industry has soaring momentum rolling into 2021, as freight growth is robust, freight rates are elevated, and fleet profits keep rising. Consumer-based freight remains vibrant and there are indications that manufacturing activity is finally beginning to accelerate.


FTR’s Shippers Conditions Index for October Reflects Worsening Market Conditions

FTR’s Shipping Conditions Index for October fell to a -11.6 reading reflecting sharply worsening market conditions. In October there was a sudden increase in capacity utilization which, along with a tough rate environment and higher freight demand, resulted in the lowest reading for the SCI in three years. FTR forecasts the SCI beyond October to improve but it is not expected to rise into positive territory until at least late 2022.