From the monthly archives: October, 2011

We are pleased to present below all posts archived in 'October, 2011'. If you still can't find what you are looking for, try using the search box.

The Retail Market Continues to Impress

While the wholesale market flattens out, the retail market continues its upward trajectory. With over 90% of our September retail data in our database, it appears that both price and mileage hit another milestone. In addition, the sales per dealership measure is on track to hit its best month of the year.

Look for actual numbers in our full Guidelines report the second week of November. In the meantime, the graphs below illustrate the basics. Nothing like a little good news to close out the month.

Wholesale Pricing Trends Revisited

The graph below reflects averaged sales reported to NADA of all sleeper tractors with under 1,000,000 miles from our auction and dealer wholesale sources. I’ve recently mentioned that the steady upward price trend in the wholesale markets of the past two years may be flattening out. Observation of price and mileage data strongly suggests that price resistance becomes strong as mileage nears the 650K mark. With over 90% of our September wholesale (auction and dealer) data received, we see that this trend continues. Mileage and price again moved in opposite directions. Statistically, the correlation between price and mileage since January, 2011 is -0.91. This is a strong negative relationship, and is convincing evidence that price is returning to its traditional inverse relationship with mileage (as opposed to its independent upward movement prior to January). The takeaway? It’s becoming pretty obvious that the 650,000 mile mark is a good rule of thumb for when to expect a truck to start losin ...

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US Industrial Output Remains Steady

Domestic industrial output continued to shrug off the turmoil in the world’s financial markets. September Industrial Production overall was essentially flat, with a 0.2% increase over August.

Consumer durables were up overall, with gains in electronic and automotive products more than offsetting declines in furniture, carpeting, and appliances.

The critical automotive sector was up 0.7% as the Japanese manufacturers neared 100% capacity.

In general, September’s numbers suggest Manufacturing will continue to drive the economy. With new truck orders up over the last two months, the trucking industry seems confident this will continue to be the case.

October 2011 Commercial Truck Guidelines

The commercial truck market and industrial producion is a good indicator of the health of the economy, which isn't as bleak as it may seem. The domestic industry has weathered the economic turmoil quite well. With August's Used Truck sales more than expected, plus an uptick in August and September new truck orders, the truck industry is proving the economic naysayers wrong.

To download the full Commerical Truck Guidelines for October, click here.

Truck Industry Ignores Economic Chatter

A recent Transport Topics article sheds some light on general sentiment about the health of the economy from those who actually have an impact on it. My takeaway is that the industry is starting to get used to the presence of vague economic “threats” in the form of stock market swings, and has decided that these threats are not great enough to prevent investing in new equipment. In a larger sense, the decisionmakers who drive our economy are tired of sitting on their hands. They’ve watched the stock markets swing up and down, and noted that those swings have had little effect on industrial output data. As I stated in the latest Guidelines, “There are constant challenges to the world’s stock markets based on real and existential factors, but the nuts and bolts of the US economy as measured by Industrial Production continue to soldier onward more or less steadily in the face of this turmoil.” Domestic industry has ignored the “fear and doom” style of reporting popular with mainstream news source ...

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Final August Results

We’ve closed out our August database, and used truck stats continue to surprise.

Just when I thought late-model sleepers were hitting a ceiling, August’s numbers come in showing a nearly $3000 increase in the average price of a 4-year-old sleeper tractor (vs. July). And this is with almost identical mileage.

The sleeper market overall was up almost exactly $1000 on mileage up 8K over July.

Dealers sold more trucks per rooftop than anytime in the last 4 months, which makes August the second-best month of the year for volume. Please refer to the graphs below.

Stay tuned for a complete, expanded analysis in our October edition of GuideLines in the next couple of days.

Trucking Unfazed by the Global Financial Crisis

Most economists agree that trucking-focused measures are leading indicators for domestic economic performance. As such, trucking data shows that turmoil in the stock market is not synonymous with overall economic health. Consider the following: • Freight tonnage returned to a pre-recession level in early 2011, where it remains • New truck orders took off in late 2010, moderated in mid-2011, and remain at a 3-year high • Deliveries (sales) of these new trucks are at levels not seen since before the recession As for the larger economy, US Industrial Production stats for 2011 have painted a picture of business investment, demand for raw materials, pent-up demand for automobiles after the Japanese disaster, and even some surprises in durable goods. Of course, the global financial crisis is creating enough uncertainty to keep employers from hiring, and consumers are holding on to more of their disposable income. But keep in mind “uncertainty” in the stock markets is currently driven more ...

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