A recent report (subscription required) indicates that trucking bankruptcies are on the rise due to rising costs and stiffer competition from intermodal. We would expect the rate of repossessions to increase in step with bankruptcies, but through June we have not noted any appreciable movement.

The graph below shows the percentage of trucks reported sold at auction as repossession. As you can see, this figure has been below 1% since December of 2011.

The message here is trucking failures are still rare enough to keep repos at a negligible rate. With a continually-expanding economy plus upcoming hours of service regulations - both of which point to higher freight rates - we do not expect the number of bankruptcy-related repossessions to increase.