Average intermodal train velocities improved by 1.2 mph compared to last week while dwell times were flat, but those numbers don’t capture the full reality of the service as experienced by shippers. Railroads adjust equipment fleets, power and crew starts to maintain operating leverage in response to rising and
Rates pulled back by 1.3% w/w, but moves by brokerages and carriers indicate they think the rally has legs.
Year-over-year intermodal volume comps were soft last week due to noise from Labor Day, which fell in Week 36, not Week 37, last year. Industry observers shouldn’t miss the forest for the trees, though: Container imports into the West Coast were exceptionally strong in July and August, trucking capacity remains
Although driver hours of service (HOS) is now firmly sewn into the trucking industry, it was a subject of contention in the months leading up to the electronic logging device (ELD) mandate in late 2017. U.S. trucking fleets were mandated to install ELDs as gatekeepers to monitor cab activity
The reefer market is following the dry van market, broadly speaking, and setting new highs in tendered loads, tender rejections and spot rates. The average reefer spot rate on Truckstop.com’s load boards rose to $3.33/mile last week, the highest rate in several years. Reefer capacity is tighter now than
Last week the railroads were able to smooth out some operational inefficiencies in their intermodal networks and by and large held average intermodal train velocities steady or improved them at the same time that volumes grew. That’s an important turning point for the rails, and following up on that performance
It’s official: Freight brokers have officially lost control of truckload spot rates. One of the most commonly cited benchmarks in the freight brokerage industry is the important, dense and liquid Chicago to Atlanta lane, which most brokers worth their salt can quote in their sleep. Long suppressed by carrier density
The U.S. industrial economy continues to recover following the COVID-related demand and production shocks of March and April, but the recovery has been uneven. In this report, we look at oil and gas, forest products and the automotive industry to gain a sense of where the strengths and weaknesses of
U.S. Class I railroads have largely arrested declines in average intermodal train velocity and lengthening terminal dwell times, but they’re doing so by punishing shippers for tendering surge and spot volumes. Union Pacific has imposed surcharges of $5,000 on spot intermodal containers outbound from California because previous rate hikes
Everything is in place for a face-ripping rally in Q4.
For the past six or seven years, an important growth driver of large private equity funds was the fact that private company valuations were higher than public market valuations, so investors and employees of companies had incentives to stay private longer. But in the past two years, technology company
The idea of expedited delivery within the trucking industry has its roots in the constantly disrupted last-mile delivery segment. The “Amazon effect,” an e-commerce trend characterized by rapidly evolving delivery expectations of end customers, has overflowed to now envelop the trucking industry. This has led fleets to scurry for
The business environment for asset-based trucking carriers continues to improve: Empty mile percentages are lower and revenue per driver per week is up. There are headwinds blowing against asset operators, though: The rack-to-retail diesel fuel spread is no longer doing much work on the carriers’ income statements, and operating expenses
Intermodal volumes for the U.S. Class Is were up 5% year-over-year in week 24, led by an 8.1% increase in Union Pacific volumes and 8% growth in CSX. Kansas City Southern’s intermodal volumes were up 12.8% year-over-year, but on a smaller base. (KSC moved 11,477 units versus UNP’s 77,457.)
Relationships between shippers and transportation providers are being reshuffled.
Two things can be true at the same time: The United States Postal Service is an invaluable public service crucial to the transportation of pharmaceuticals, official documents and much else, and it’s also in an unsustainable position and in need of a turnaround. Many people are aware of the
Consider the fact that across Union Pacific, BNSF, CSX and Norfolk Southern, headcount was down 16.6% year-over-year in July (less negative than June’s -17.9%), yet last week intermodal volumes were up 1.9% year-over-year for the second week in a row. In particular, the best intermodal volume growth has been
Los Angeles and Dallas are driving the national market.
In the age of e-commerce, last-mile delivery networks have become a vital yardstick to measure delivery experiences. In North America, the mainstream acceptance of e-commerce has a lot to do with Amazon and its obsession with putting customer needs at the center of its value chain. The resulting ‘Amazon
Reefer markets took a leg up in August, supported by fundamentally strong demand, constrained capacity, and a renewed sense of confidence among carriers that now is the time to exercise pricing power. In spot markets, carriers are falling off loads, naming their price, and managing yield. 3PLs are giving
Intermodal volumes for U.S. Class I railroads are positive year-over-year for the first time in 2020, excepting anomalous comparisons for the week of July 4 (July 4 fell on a weekend this year, so its impact to freight was dampened). The road to get back to par has been a