Demand for Trailers on the Rise, Survey Says

Demand for Trailers on the Rise, Survey Says

Transport operators may be planning to purchase more trailers in the first quarter of 2012, as stronger than usual freight shipments spur demand for capacity.

For-hire, private and government fleets in the U.S. are increasing their planned trailer purchases, according to a report from CK Commercial Vehicle Research.

The first quarter 2012 Fleet Sentiment Buying Index rose 4.6 percent from the fourth quarter, largely because of short range plans to add trailer equipment.

Forty-five percent of the respondents planned trailer orders, and the volume of those orders more than doubled from the fourth quarter survey, CKCVR said.

The percentage of fleet operators planning to order power units increased marginally, but CKCVR said the size of those orders fell from the fourth quarter.

Several for-hire carriers reported stronger than anticipated freight demand in the first weeks of the first quarter, spurred by unseasonably warm weather.

January was comparatively free of supply chain disruptions often caused by mid-winter snow and ice storms, which cut down on weather-related truck delays.

Trailer orders climbed 38 percent from 2010 last year
, according to ACT Research.

“Rising (trailer) backlogs and low levels of cancellation activity speak to the strength of demand at the start of 2012,” said Kenny Vieth, president and senior analyst.

Contact William B. Cassidy wcassidy@joc.com.