FTR Associates’ Shippers Conditions Index for June fell “only marginally” from the previous month to a reading of negative 8.1, reflecting a “relatively weak” freight environment, offsetting increased capacity constraints in advance of the hours of service implementation.
The SCI is expected to remain in a tight range close to the current reading throughout the rest of the year.
“The June SCI does not yet reflect the new hours of service regulations that are now the law of the land,” said Lawrence Gross, senior consultant for FTR, in a written statement. “We estimate that the onset of these new regulations will eventually pull about 3 percent of truck capacity out of the system.”
“Offsetting this removal of capacity is the currently weak freight environment due to an economy which is growing slower than we had expected (or hoped),” Gross continued. “The net effect is to postpone significant tightening of capacity into later this year or even next year, depending on what happens with the economy.”