Economy Watch

Lower fuel prices and lower fuel surcharges are slowing the increase of freight shipping costs on both sides of the U.S. border or even reducing them, despite higher contract trucking rates.

The great swell in U.S. transportation, warehousing and utility jobs receded in July after hitting historic heights in April and May, but demand for workers remains strong in a complex employment market. Hiring numbers, and separations, continue to rise.

Total U.S. freight movement dropped in August, and new orders also declined, setting the stage for flat growth for the rest of the year, forecasts an organization representing supply chain logistics professionals. The message builds on the ominous signs for freight growth seen through high inventories and high sales-to-inventory ratios.

As retailers gear up for this year’s peak holiday shipping season, consumers are looking to them for one thing: more options, according to a new Pitney Bowes survey.

Household spending in the U.S. and European Union will revive flagging container shipping demand in the second half, a chief shipping analyst at BIMCO said.

The seven-year U.S. economic recovery is getting "long in the tooth," Chicago Federal Reserve Bank economist William Strauss said, but there's life in the "tortoise" yet.

A year-over-year drop in worldwide TV shipments underscores the link between shifts in global currency values, consumer sentiment and shipping volumes.

China’s economic indicators continue to portray a country struggling against weak domestic and external demand with growth in factory output falling short of market expectations and offering little encouragement to declining exports.

U.S. freight volumes dropped in August, falling 4.6 percent year-over-year, while shipper spend on transportation slipped 8 percent, the latest Cass Freight Index shows.

China International Marine Containers reported strong sales in the first half of both dry containers and reefers, but issued a caution that the demand for new boxes would be weak over the rest of the year.