Recovery may not be what it seems

There is still much uncertainty and fear regarding the economic future.
By Rosalyn Wilson, SCMR Blogger
July 27, 2010 - SCMR Editorial

Tonnage and carloads carried continues to rise on the strength of the holiday surge. Retailers have banked on returning consumer confidence and spending and orders are up. West coast imports are up and intermodal rail shipments are mirroring the rise and will probably have the best numbers since 2006. Rates for ocean and air are skyrocketing and rates are beginning to inch up in rail and truck.  Trucking bankruptcies in 2010 have right-sized the industry more in line with demand…for now.

Yet on the horizon I hear rumblings of capacity shortages – trucking companies turning down loads because they can’t handle them, shippers unable to find carriers to fit their immediate shipping schedules. The truck driver shortage, especially for experienced drivers, is showing up in all sectors now. The signs in the transportation sector seem to be trending in the right direction, but growth is slow and volatile.  There is still much uncertainty and fear regarding the economic future. Businesses are reluctant to invest or hire new workers and consumers have not shown that they are ready to return to earlier spending patterns.



About the Author

image
Rosalyn Wilson
SCMR Blogger
Rosalyn Wilson is the author of the highly regarded “State of Logistics Report,” which is produced annually by the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP) and sponsored by Penske Logistics. Rosalyn has over thirty years experience researching and writing about the supply chain industry. She is a Senior Business Analyst at Delcan Corporation, a multi-disciplinary engineering, management, and technology consulting firm. She can be reached directly at .(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

So far, so good may be the best way to describe the current state of progress in the negotiating process regarding the announcement made last month by FedEx that it 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.

A new study, “Understanding Risk Assessment Practices at Manufacturing Companies,” uncovers complex business risks and disruptors facing manufacturers, and a pressing need for the industry to evolve its risk assessment capabilities.

Led by perennial earnings champ Old Dominion Freight Line, the nation’s LTL carriers as a group are enjoying a particularly strong earnings season—especially when one considers the first quarter usually is the slowest period for trucking in general with harsh winter weather bearing down on earnings.

A mixed bag may be the most appropriate way to characterize the current state of manufacturing based on the most recent edition of the April edition of the Manufacturing Report on Business issued by the Institute for Supply Management today.

The Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration and Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (FRA) issued its long-awaited Final Rulemaking for “Enhanced Tank Car Standards and Operational Controls for High-Hazard Flammable Trains.”

Article Topics

Blogs · Ocean · Trucking · Transportation · Shipping · All topics

About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review. Patrick covers international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. Contact Patrick Burnson

Comments

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