FTR’s Trucking Conditions Index for October Pulls Back Ahead of Expected Market Improvement

12.12.16 | FTR

FTR’s Trucking Conditions Index (TCI) for October, at a reading of 2.84, continued the short-term pullback ahead of expected capacity tightening in 2017. While current readings are in low positive territory, the index remains on course to reflect improving conditions for carriers as capacity tightens from regulations being implemented. This will improve pricing and margins for trucking companies through next year. The Trucking Conditions Index is forecast to reach its peak in late 2017 or early 2018.

Details of the October TCI are found in the December issue of FTR’s Trucking Update, published November 30. The ‘Notes by the Dashboard Light’ section in the current issue includes Data, Forecasts, and Uncertainty - Lessons from the Election. Along with the TCI and ‘Notes by the Dashboard Light,’ Trucking Update includes data and analysis on load volumes, the capacity environment, rates, costs, and the truck driver situation.

Click here to view the latest release and an interactive graph of the TCI >

Jonathan Starks, Chief Operating Officer at FTR, commented, “Despite the pullback in the October TCI there is sufficient evidence in the marketplace to indicate a turnaround is in the works for truckers. The spot market has shown a dramatic change with posted loads showing a 40% increase in November versus last year. Combine that with the recent reductions in truck capacity that have finally occurred, and you arrive at a market that is set to see year-over-year rate increases for the first time since the second quarter of 2015. That is 80+ weeks of negative results - even a small improvement will feel really good about now. The change in administration at the White House creates some inherent uncertainty, but we will have a better picture of a Donald Trump presidency fairly soon. The biggest unknown is the impact of ELDs on the marketplace in 2017. If regulations are delayed or expunged, the impact on 2017 will be muted and pricing won’t be as strong as expected. However, the market is already showing a positive shift, and the negative pricing of the last two years is unlikely to last much longer.”

Trucking Update, published monthly, is part of FTR’s Freight Focus and reports data that directly impacts the activity and profitability of truck fleets. As part of Trucking Update, FTR forecasts expected trends in this data and the probable short and long term consequences. For more information on how to subscribe to Trucking Update, or other publications within FTR's Freight Focus, send an email to [email protected]  or call (888) 988-1699 ext. 1.

For more than two decades, FTR has been the thought leader in freight transportation forecasting in North America. The company’s national award-winning forecasters collect and analyze all data likely to impact freight movement, issuing consistently reliable reports for trucking, rail, and intermodal transportation as well as providing demand analysis for commercial vehicle and railcar. FTR’s forecasting and specially designed reports have resulted in advanced planning and cost-savings for companies throughout the transportation sector.
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