November Class 8 orders down compared to October, says ACT Research

Despite decline, ACT says demand is still solid.

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New orders for Class 8 trucks in November were down from October, according to ACT Research, a provider of data and analysis for trucks and other commercial vehicles.

Earlier this month, ACT predicted that November orders would come in around 20,700, which would represent about a 25 percent decline from October’s 24,354, the third best month for orders in 2011 based on ACT’s data.

The firm’s final tally for November orders was very close to its estimate at 20,603 orders. But even with this decline, it noted that the demand situation for Class 8 vehicles remains favorable.

“We believe special factors, such as the near selling out of remaining 2011 build slots in October and cancellations in export orders in November, were responsible for the boost in order activity in October and the fall-off in order activity in November,” said Kenny Vieth, president and senior analyst at ACT, in a statement. “Our suggestion is to look at October and November in aggregate. Doing so generates average monthly net orders of 24,400 units.”

In an interview with LM, Vieth said there were a few reasons for looking at October and November numbers in aggregate form.

Despite the disparity in the orders between the two months, he explained that not a lot changed within the industry on a substantive basis in terms of freight levels, trucking profitability, or in used truck prices.

“In that regard, we remain pretty bullish on the underlying demand trends,” said Vieth.

He added that even a slight improvement in volume or demand could spur a decent uptick in orders, too.

When asked how things are trending out order-wise for the month of December, Vieth said that visibility into that is not clear, although he noted that because of the 100 percent bonus depreciation allowance for capital goods deduction, which expires at the end of 2011, points to a good retail sales month for trucks in December.

About the Author

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. Contact Jeff Berman

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