Trucking costs up in June: FTR

BLOOMINGTON, IN – Trucking was costlier in June, compared to the month before, according to FTR Transportation Intelligence.

The industry forecasting website said June saw costs for labor, fuel, and purchased transport increase over those in May.

Jonathan Starks, chief operating officer at FTR, says that despite the increase, the industry has stayed relatively stable since this time last year.

Starks also predicts that labor shortages will likely increase sooner than expected, saying that resistance to new regulations, such as mandatory electronic logging device (ELD) implementation, and continued freight growth, may be putting a drag on capacity. As the economy begins reaching full employment, hiring is also becoming more difficult.

FTR says the forecast for the year remains favorable, but won’t reach levels predicted for 2018, with growth estimated to double next year. The site is also bracing for a possible recession by the end of 2017, affecting growth in the last half of the year.

Starks says the recent strong increases in spot market rates bear a close watch as well, as they are an early indicator as to how rates in the contract arena are likely to move. Spot data in early August shows that the rate increases have hit the double-digit mark and are continuing to climb.

FTR warns the industry should be prepared for possible disruptions that may happen in December when the ELD mandate comes into effect.

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