FTR Shippers Conditions Index for November Declines Reflecting Seasonal Capacity Constraints

Nashville, IN (January 11, 2012) FTR Associates’ Shippers Conditions Index (SCI) for November dropped 2.5 points from the previous month to a reading of -6.1 reflecting seasonal tightening of shipping capacity. The SCI sums up all market influences that affect shippers; a reading above zero suggests a favorable shipping environment, while a reading below zero is unfavorable. FTR’s January Shippers Update published January 6 reports that the trucking industry is currently in a stable phase with firm rates and modestly tight capacity, a situation that is expected to continue throughout much of the year. Now that the revised Federal Hours of Service regulations have issued, the acute trucking capacity shortage that had been expected to hit in 2012 has been postponed until 2013.

Larry Gross, Senior Consultant for FTR commented: “The final Hours of Service regulations recently issued by the FMCSA were not as onerous as originally feared. The enforcement date of mid-2013 provides plenty of time for the inevitable court challenges to proceed without imposing additional uncertainty costs on shippers and carriers. Nevertheless, unless there are further changes in this or other new regulations, or a major economic slowdown between now and the middle of next year, we still project a major capacity shortage in trucking for next summer.”

The January Shippers Update includes commentary on the current status of Hours of Service rules as well as some new truck data. Information about how to subscribe to the Shippers Update, send an e-mail to sales@ftrassociates.com or call 888-988-1699 ext. 1.

The Shippers Update, launched by FTR Associates during 2010 as a part of the firm’s Freight Focus Series, looks at conditions that will affect the cost and efficiency of shipping goods via all transportation modes. North American shippers will find in one reference the essential information they need on freight volumes, equipment capacity and transport costs and rates. The Shippers Update has both history and forecasts for four modal options: truckload, less-than-truckload, intermodal and rail carload. The analysis includes the breakdown of total truck and rail volumes into major commodity segments. It also provides historical snapshots of inland water and air freight markets. The freight data is augmented by an abundant collection of supporting data covering macro-economics and the fuel market.

FTR Associates, located in Nashville, IN has been a leader in transportation forecasting for over 20 years. The company’s U.S. Freight Model collects and analyzes all data likely to impact freight movement and is based on specific characteristics for over 200 commodity groups. FTR Associates’ forecast reports cover trucking and rail transportation and include demand analysis for commercial vehicle as well as railcar. Specially designed reports are offered to participants in both industries to cover specific needs. For more information about the work of FTR Associates, visit www.ftrassociates.com or call Helen Lile at 888-988-1699 Ext. 45.

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