FTR Shippers Conditions Index Unchanged for Now

Nashville, IN (June 13, 2012) FTR Associates’ Shippers Conditions Index (SCI) for April was basically unchanged from the previous month with a moderately negative reading of -5.4. The index is expected to remain in a tight range throughout the summer, potentially deteriorating marginally in the latter part of the year. The real negative impact to shippers will begin to occur in 2013 as new Hours of Service rules are expected to put a significant drain on trucking 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. Details of the current factors affecting the April Shippers Conditions Index are found in the June issue of FTR’s Shippers Update published June 8.

Larry Gross, Senior Consultant for FTR, commented, “The current lackluster performance of the economy has had a silver lining for shippers as slow growth in truck freight demand has not caused capacity to tighten to a great extent, keeping a lid on rates. The moment of truth has been delayed but not avoided. We still expect shipping conditions to deteriorate as we move into 2013 unless external events such as the European debt crisis send the economy back into a tailspin – an event that is possible but not considered likely as of this point.”

The June Shippers Update includes commentary explaining why the driver shortage has not materialized as forecasted. For more 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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