Subscribe to our free, weekly email newsletter!


2013’s Top 10 News Stories The news that shaped the year in logistics and transportation

Below are the top stories of 2013 featured in the News & Analysis section of December LM.
By Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
December 01, 2013

New Hours-of-Service (HOS) rules affecting truckload market
The long-dreaded new components of motor carrier HOS regulations took effect on July 1, and the reception from the shipper and carrier communities has been largely negative. Changes to the 34-hour restart provision have been the biggest culprit, with industry estimates pinning the loss of carrier productivity from the HOS rule changes from 2 percent to 10 percent.

Still a long road ahead for YRC
Despite some previous signs of progress, LTL carrier YRC Worldwide still faces an uphill challenge as it tries to get back into the black and meet pending debt obligations to its lenders in early 2014. On top of that, its network optimization plan for its largest group, YRC Freight, had a bumpy beginning, which led to tonnage, earnings, and volume declines in the third quarter.

Labor peace arrives for East and Gulf Coast ports
The United States Maritime Alliance (USMX), a group of container carriers, direct employers, and port associations serving U.S.-based East and Gulf Coasts, and the International Longshoremen’s Association (ILA), the largest union of maritime workers in North America, finally arrived to a state of labor peace in April. ILA membership signed off on a six-year Master Contract that covers roughly 14,500 members in a ratification vote held at East and Gulf Coast member ports.

Trucking M&A activity starting to heat up
The second half of the year brought increased activity in trucking deals, with some closed and pending deals in the news. The largest potential merger would be Phoenix-based Knight Transportation’s proposed $242 million takeover, including debt assumption, of financially ailing USA Truck.

UPS-TNT deal fails to come to fruition
The planned acquisition of Netherlands-based TNT Express by UPS was officially called off in January. This decision by UPS followed a decision from the European Commission (EC), the executive body of the European Union, which prohibited the acquisition. UPS said that as a result of the prohibition by the EC, the deal would not be completed and UPS and TNT entered into a separate agreement to terminate the merger protocol.

USPS losses continue to mount
While its Shipping Services group continues to make positive inroads, the United States Postal Service (USPS) still has a way to go to turn a profit. For the 2013 fiscal year, the USPS incurred a $5 billion net loss and continues to feel the impact of the decline of First Class mail volumes and its federally-mandated payments prefunding health retiree benefits.

LNG making inroads in freight transportation
As diesel prices saw ongoing weekly declines through much of the second half of the year, liquefied natural gas (LNG) deployment and testing continues to increase in both the trucking and railroad sectors. Industry experts say that with natural gas prices low, LNG usage could be a long-term benefit, but upfront costs are a factor, too.

Water Resources Development Act has strong potential
The chances of a new water resources bill being passed for the first time since 2007 are strong, with the House and Senate both signing off on the Water Resources Development Act by wide margins. This bill would allocate increased resources for the Harbor Maintenance Trust (HMT) Fund that is comprised of revenues collected annually from importers and domestic shippers for deep-draft navigation maintenance dredging and the operation and maintenance of large and small ports.

E-commerce continues to change complexion of supply chain
The ongoing emergence of consumers shopping online is having a major impact on supply chain and logistics processes in the form of changing delivery patterns and schedules, with a focus on next- or same-day delivery and where to set up warehouses and distribution centers.

Intermodal continues to roll
Increasing intermodal usage by shippers was reflected in data from the Association of American Railroads (AAR). The AAR said August marked the single best-ever monthly performance for the mode at 1,031,179 containers and trailers.

About the Author

Jeff Berman headshot
Jeff Berman
Group News Editor

Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


Subscribe to Logistics Management magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your
entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

In the third-party logistics (3PL) sector, the ongoing trend of merger and acquisition (M&A) activity never seems to take a break. That is apparent in recent weeks alone, with XPO Logistics recent acquisition of Norbert Dentressangle for $3.53 billion, Echo Global Logistics scooping up Command Transportation for $420 million, and Kuehne+Nagel buying ReTrans for an undisclosed sum.

During this webcast attendees will learn about technology that is delivering real-time tracking on freight and putting an end to the all too common question of “Where’s My Brokered Load?”. Whether you’re a broker, 3PL, shipper, or carrier, find out how you can gain automated, TMS-integrated visibility on all your shipments.

FedEx recently took another step in its plans to acquire Netherlands-based TNT-NV and a provider of mail and courier services and the fourth largest global parcel operator for $4.8 billion, which it announced in early April. The company said it has “submitted the required filing to the European Commission to obtain regulatory clearance in connection with the intended recommended public cash offer all issued and outstanding ordinary shares in the capital of TNT Express.”

The American Trucking Associations last week praised Senator Deb Fischer (R-Neb.) for her bill that takes some positive steps towards alleviating the current environment regarding the truck driver shortage.

Global third-party logistics (3PL) services provider Kuehne+Nagel (KN) said this week it has entered into an agreement to acquire ReTrans Inc., a Memphis-based provider of multimodal transportation services.

Article Topics

News · December 2013 · All topics

Comments

Post a comment
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.


© Copyright 2015 Peerless Media LLC, a division of EH Publishing, Inc • 111 Speen Street, Ste 200, Framingham, MA 01701 USA