Trucking Market Recession

Trucking Market Recession Carries into Q2

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Matthew Schore
Freight Rate Forecast

A.N. Webber Logistics makes it the company’s business to help its customers, both large and small, ship smarter and live better. Arming its partners with the latest industry news and analysis is one way to help achieve that together.

As the second quarter gets underway, data suggests the trucking industry remains in a recession, although some analysts believe the market has bottomed out. One thing is for sure: Carriers worked harder to try and get ahead in 2023. Thieves apparently worked harder last year too. Cargo thefts in the United States jumped nearly 60% last year.

Analysts Expect ‘Pretty Rough Ride’ Throughout 2024

Some analysts believe the trucking market has bottomed out, but that doesn’t mean it’s all sunny skies from here on out. “It’s a bit like what we said last year, and that is: ‘Hold on tight because this is going to be a pretty rough ride through the rest of the year,’” Dean Croke, principal analyst at DAT Freight & Analytics, said at the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Kentucky, according to Trucking Dive.

Data Suggests ‘Truck Freight Remains in a Recession’

American Trucking Associations (ATA) data showed U.S. for-hire truck tonnage climbed 4.3% in February. “After a very soft January, due in part to winter storms, truck tonnage snapped back in February,” Bob Costello, ATA’s chief economist, said, according to Truck News. “February’s level was the highest in a year, yet the index still contracted from a year earlier, suggesting truck freight remains in a recession.”

Carriers Working Harder to Stay on the Road

Truckstop said a survey of 2,000 carriers revealed they had to work harder in 2023 to stay profitable. “In the past year, carriers have experienced a significant increase in their workload, driving an additional 3,000 miles on average, handling two more loads each month, and absorbing the costs for 17% of their miles as unpaid ‘deadhead’ travel,” Truckstop said.

Cargo Thefts Across Country Jump Nearly 60%

CargoNet said there were 2,852 reported cargo theft incidents in the United States in 2023 – a 59.33% increase over 2022. Food and beverage was the top-targeted commodity, and California was the hardest hit, with about 31% of the thefts occurring in the Golden State. “Much of the increase is due to ongoing shipment misdirection attacks, a kind of strategic cargo theft in which actors use stolen motor carrier and logistics broker identities to obtain freight and misdirect it from the intended receiver so they (can) steal it,” CargoNet said in a statement posted by Land Line.

Solar Panels Could Help Carriers Reduce Costs

According to Solar Cell, carriers can reduce their fuel costs and extend the life of batteries in trucks by installing lightweight, adhesive panels on the roofs of cabs to capture solar energy, which is then stored in the battery bank of the vehicle’s electric power unit. “These solar panels can power essential functions within the cab, such as heating, cooling, and electronic devices, reducing the need for idling and conserving fuel,” Solar Cell said. “By installing solar panels, carriers like GP Transco have seen significant savings in fuel costs and maintenance expenses, making it a worthwhile investment for their fleet.”  

Make It Through Rough Rides with A.N. Webber

A.N. Webber Logistics’ customers don’t need to wait for after-the-fact analyses on what’s happening in the freight market. The logistics stalwart provides real-time truckload spot market rating that fuels its customers’ supply chain efficiency.

A.N. Webber’s veteran logistics team applies its expertise every time, whether it’s a single shipment or management of an entire supply chain. The family-owned company can move it all, from dry van to heavy haul, flatbed, open deck, and rail. The Kankakee, Illinois-headquartered company utilizes McLeod TMS to offer the best solutions for clients in the appliance, automotive, chemical, construction, food grade/distribution, industrial, manufacturing, paper products, and steel industries. And A.N. Webber moves its customers’ goods, including cross-border freight, with a fleet of Peterbilts with an average age of just 2 years old.

Contact A.N. Webber Logistics and get a quote today.


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