BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Conditions for U.S. shippers improved in June, with a 8.8 reading on the FTR Shippers Conditions Index, up two points from May.
That marked the strongest month for shipper conditions since February 2016, FTR reports.
Freight-related indicators are mixed. Manufacturing is growing slowly, and construction is weaker. But consumer spending remains strong. FTR reports truckload rates are about 7.5% lower than 2019, with spot rates down nearly 18%. But LTL rates have been higher this year.
FTR is projecting both rates will decline in 2020.
“The relatively weak rate environment for truckload allows it to compete more effectively with intermodal,” said Todd Tranausky, vice-president of rail and intermodal at FTR. “Intermodal volumes have been stymied by trade headwinds, changes in rail service offerings, overall rail service levels, and the weak truck market. International and domestic intermodal each struggled in June with weak results.”