Market Pulse

October 2012 trucking conditions

Trucking executives grew significantly more concerned about freight volume in October, although the effects of Hurricane Sandy might have played a role. Driver availability remained the top concern of trucking executives in the monthly Randall-Reilly MarketPulse survey of trucking conditions, but the portion most worried about freight volume jumped from just over 14% in September to nearly 26% in October. Larger carriers — those with more than 100 power units — were especially concerned about freight volume. The September 2012 survey is based on responses from 114 senior executives of for-hire trucking companies. Other findings:

•    October business conditions were mixed with the same percentage – about 27% — saying conditions were better than September as those who said conditions were worse. A lightly larger percentage of smaller carriers reported business conditions as improved than smaller carriers.
•    Almost 52% of carriers expect business conditions to be about the same and another 33% believe conditions will be better in six months, adjusting for seasonality. Smaller carriers were significantly more optimistic than larger carriers.
•    Nearly 60% of the carriers plan to replace aging equipment without changing fleet size over the next six months. About 25% plan to growth their fleets. There was no significant difference between larger carriers and smaller carriers.

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