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Orders & Indices

11.16.20

FTR’s Trucking Conditions Index for September Reflect Robust Market Conditions for Carriers

FTR’s Trucking Conditions Index rose again in September to a positive reading of 10.69, up 2+ points from August. September’s TCI - the third highest reading since January 2010 - reflects strong freight rates mostly due to the intense stress in the consumer goods supply chain.
 
Details of the September TCI are found in the November issue of FTR’s Trucking Update, published October 30. Additional commentary discusses the confluence of factors that are spurring an unprecedented surge in newly authorized motor carriers. Beyond the TCI and additional commentary, the Trucking Update includes data and analysis on load volumes, the capacity environment, and rates. FTR also publishes ongoing publicly available analysis on the impact of COVID-19 on freight transportation at FTR’s COVID-19 intelligence.

11.13.20

FTR Reports Preliminary U.S. Net Trailer Orders Set All-Time Record at an Astounding 56,500 Units

FTR reports that preliminary U.S. net trailer orders for October set an all-time record at 56,500 units. October’s orders were up 9% m/m and up a sturdy 68% y/y. With this latest banner month, trailer orders for the last twelve months now equal 249,500 units.
 


11.03.20

FTR Reports Preliminary North American Class 8 Net Orders Swell to 40,100 Units in October

FTR reports preliminary North American Class 8 net orders soared in October to 40,100 units. This is the first 40,000+ unit month for Class 8 orders since October of 2018, adding to the already increased order activity from September. Orders were up 26% m/m and up 83% y/y. Class 8 orders for the past twelve months now stand at 215,000 units.


10.22.20

FTR’s Shippers Conditions Index for August Reflect Weakest Shipping Conditions in Two Years

The FTR Shippers Conditions Index (SCI) for August fell further into negative territory to a reading of -1.79. Just four months after the strongest market conditions on record, shipping conditions in August were the weakest in two years.
 
While most factors affecting the Shipping Conditions Index in August were equal to or more favorable than in July, the rate environment was significantly more unfavorable for shippers. The short-term outlook is for the SCI to improve; however, it is expected to become significantly negative in the second half of 2021 primarily due to tighter capacity and higher shipping rates.

10.12.20

FTR Reports Preliminary U.S. Net Trailer Orders for September Exploded to 52,000 Units, The Third Highest Month on Record

FTR reports that preliminary U.S. net trailer orders for September exploded to the third-highest month ever, at 52,000 units. September’s orders were 23,500 units above August and 33,400 more than September 2019. With this latest activity, trailer orders for the last twelve months now equal 224,100 units.
 
The great majority of the September orders were for dry vans. Refrigerated van orders were also comparatively robust. Flatbed orders are expected to continue their sluggish recovery. Backlogs are predicted to jump back up to December 2019 levels. The strong order totals from the last two months should push production up to pre-pandemic levels in Q4, with more increases expected, starting early next year.


10.02.20

FTR Reports Preliminary North American Class 8 Net Orders Surge in September to 32,000 Units

FTR reports preliminary North American Class 8 net orders surged in September to the highest total since October 2018, hitting 32,000 units. September order activity was up 55% m/m and 160% y/y. Class 8 net orders for the last 12 months now total 197,000 units.

Fleets have renewed confidence, and the stronger than expected economic and freight recovery is spurring equipment orders. The orders are a combination of growing replacement demand and some expansion demand in those regions where capacity is tightening. The uncertainty about the pandemic continues to fade, as more sectors of the economy reopen and consumer mobility increases.

09.24.20

FTR’s Shippers Conditions Index for July Falls to Negative Territory

The FTR Shippers Conditions Index (SCI) fell into negative territory for the first time since August 2018. After a huge positive spike as COVID-19 impacted freight movement, the SCI now reflects a continued weakening of shippers’ market conditions. Freight volume and utilization were actually more favorable to shippers in July, but the rate environment swung from significantly positive in June to a significantly negative reading in July.
 
After a near term slightly negative view for the SCI, FTR expects potential increased capacity to push the index back into the positive range by Q4 and through 2021. However, continued high capacity utilization is a significant risk.

09.14.20

FTR Reports Preliminary U.S. Net Trailer Orders for August Provide Positive Momentum with a Jump to 28,700 Units

FTR reports that preliminary U.S. net trailer orders for August jumped 49% m/m to 28,700 units, the strongest activity since last October. August orders were 174% above the same month during the previous year, with trailer orders for the last twelve months now totaling 191,000 units.
 
Dry van orders were particularly robust, with refrigerated vans also displaying strength. Flatbed orders improved from July but remain sluggish, as industrial freight continues to lag consumer freight. Backlogs are expected to rise to near pre-pandemic levels.