Subscribe to our free, weekly email newsletter!

A lot of logistics activity in a short time

By Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
February 12, 2013

While 2013 is still basically in its infancy that by no stretch means that the year is not pulling its weight, when it comes to what is happening in the logistics and supply chain world.

What I am basically trying to say is that a lot has happened in a pretty short time.

Not sold on this theory? Take a look at things that have already happened so far, as of mid-February i.e. the halfway point of the first quarter:
-the United States Postal Service announced it intends to eliminate Saturday delivery;
-YRC reported steady improvements in Q4 and full-year 2012 earnings results;
-Port labor contract situations are trending both positively and negatively;
-DOT Secretary Ray LaHood announced he will be stepping down;
-Intermodal container movements hit a record high in 2012; and
-the planned acquisition of TNT Express by UPS is officially off.

Oh, yeah, diesel prices are heading up, again, in a big way, too, in recent weeks.

There are certainly more headlines that could be added to that list, but I will cut the list short for now. It does make one realize quite quickly that the logistics world we live in is one which is very, very rarely devoid of important and relevant things happening on a day-to-day basis.

As for what we can expect to see going down the rest of the 2013 road, there appears to be a smorgasbord of potential things to select off of the logistics menu.

One item sure to be at the top of the list is the aftereffect on capacity and rates stemming from the new government-mandated motor carrier Hours-of-Service regulations set to go into effect mid-year.

And on a more general level, the subsequent impact of higher taxes—as a result of the Fiscal Cliff negotiations—on consumer spending and shopping activity will be one to keep an eye on, especially at a time when the employment outlook, while stagnant at times, continues to trend in the right direction, coupled with ongoing signs of life for new housing starts and automotive sales, too.

Another factor to watch as the year moves on is the ongoing impact of e-commerce on supply chain and logistics operations. All of those UPS and FedEx trucks you saw in your neighborhood during the holiday season were no fluke by any stretch. Chances are you might still be seeing them, and that you will continue to for a long time to come.

These are just a few items from a pretty long list of exciting things happening in the sectors we report on and that you live in on a daily basis. Obviously, there is a long way to go, but it will be interesting—and fun—to see what happens next.

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

Seasonally-adjusted (SA) for-hire truck tonnage in October at 135.7 (2000=100) was up 1.9 percent compared to September’s 133.1, and the ATA’s not seasonally-adjusted (NSA) index, which represents the change in tonnage actually hauled by fleets before any seasonal adjustment was 139.8 in October, which was 0.9 percent ahead of September.

The average price per gallon of diesel gasoline fell 3.7 cents to $2.445 per gallon, according to data issued today by the Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration (EIA). This marks the lowest weekly price for diesel since June 1, 2009, when it was at $2.352 per gallon.

In its report, entitled “Grey is the new Black,” JLL takes a close look at supply chain-related trends that can influence retailers’ approaches to Black Friday.

This year, it's all about the digital supply network. In this virtual conference, we will define the challenges currently facing supply chain organizations and offer solutions designed to transform linear operations into dynamic, automated networks that offer seamless communication, visibility, and the ability to respond and optimize processes at any given time.

In his opening comments assessing the economy at last week’s RailTrends conference hosted by Progressive Railroading magazine and independent railroad analyst Tony Hatch, FTR Senior analyst Larry Gross said the economy continues to slog ahead at a relatively tepid pace, coupled with some volatility in terms of overall GDP growth. And amid that slogging, Gross said there is currently an economic hand-off occurring between the industrial sector and the consumer sector.

Article Topics

Blogs · Supply Chain · Logistics · All topics


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