FTR Reports May Final Trailer Orders at 4,300 Units

06.18.20 | FTR

FTR reports final net trailer orders for May improved over the dismal April activity, coming in at 4,300 Units. May orders were +1200% m/m but still substantially lagging last year with a -64% y/y comparison. New orders are still tepid, and cancellations were elevated for the third consecutive month. Trailer orders for the past twelve months now total 155,000 units.
All segments except flatbeds and specialty experienced m/m order increases. It appears that fleets were still reluctant to replace old trailers in the throes of the pandemic, which crashed the economy in March. Carriers continue to monitor the freight markets closely before committing to placing orders for 2020 deliveries.

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Don Ake, FTR vice president of commercial vehicles, commented, “Freight demand has started a slow and choppy recovery after hitting the bottom in mid-April. The freight markets should continue to improve as concern about the pandemic wanes and more sectors of the economy reopen. A key area is the manufacturing sector which got severely crunched when many factories shut down, some not reopening until May. Industrial-related freight will take longer to recover than consumer freight.
“There are signs of life in the trailer market. We expect June orders to be much better than the previous two months. After that, it depends on the speed and strength of the economic recovery. The summer is traditionally a weak time for trailer orders, but the buying cycles have been disrupted. Everything ordered in the next four months should still be for use this year. There is still a fair amount of quote activity happening, it just depends on fleet confidence going forward.”
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The full trailer data is available as part of FTR's North American Truck & Trailer Outlook service.

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About FTR
For more than 30 years, FTR has served as the industry leader in freight transportation forecasting for the shipping, trucking, rail, intermodal, equipment, and financial communities in North America. FTR’s experts, with over 250 years of combined experience in the transportation industry, provide quantitative analysis with historical and modal-specific insights. FTR’s reports, data, commentary, and insights help clients evaluate market risks, identify new opportunities, and make informed decisions.
FTR is the only company with a complete set of freight data for all modes of transportation with detail at the 3 Digit STCC commodity level. FTR tracks and forecasts 200+ unique commodity groups both quarterly and annually using their proprietary Freight•cast U.S. freight transportation model. FTR’s Transportation Conference held annually in September in Indianapolis is a unique event bringing together every aspect of the freight transportation world into one place. For more information