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Market Update: Transportation Industry News

Market-Updates Domestic
The slowing gross domestic product (GDP) growth and a change in growth toward services has adjusted freight markets for both truckload and rail. Read this month’s Market Update for highlights on some of the key factors that impact the transportation industry in North America. Then share your thoughts on these topics and other issues that affect your business.

Large Scale Market Indicators    

The Chinese government recently devalued the Yuan by nearly 2%, which could have a ripple effect on supply chains. From a near-term global trade perspective, the devaluation will give exports from China a boost by making them less expensive. Read more.

The Federal Highway Administration released a study that categorized the truck parking shortage as a “safety concern,” saying that the lack of legal parking spaces could cause drivers to continue driving while tired or stop in unsafe places—like road and interstate shoulders or exit ramps—to sleep. Read more.

Carrier Capacity

According to the American Trucking Associations (ATA), year over year truck tonnage gained 3.7% in July, jumping to the second-highest level ever as factory output rebounded and the consumer and housing markets continued to improve. Read more.

Driver Shortage

FTR said that fleets are reporting 4% to 6% increases in driver wages, along with generous sign-on bonuses. Moderating turnover numbers point to the success of these steps, and fleets say that they are also experiencing significant increases in recruiting expenses.

Government Regulations

Scott Darling, chief counsel of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), has been the agency’s acting administrator since last year and was nominated by President Obama to be officially named FMCSA administrator. The nomination must still be confirmed by the Senate.

Diesel Pricing    

The national average for diesel gasoline prices dropped another 4.7 cents—to $2.51 per gallon—which is now the lowest weekly average price since July 2009. Prices have fallen a cumulative 40 cents since the week of May 25.