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The latest release of ACT’s For-Hire Trucking Index, with May data, showed a slowing in volumes, strength in pricing, and a sharp decline in the supply-demand balance.
Kenny Vieth, ACT Research’s president and senior analyst commented, “Consistent with some consumer-related macro softness as well as the deceleration in DAT’s load-to-truck ratios from the beginning to the end of the month, May’s Volume Index decelerated to its lowest reading since the start of the pandemic.
“Despite the drop in volume growth, we continue to witness the strongest rate environment in the survey’s history,” he continued, “with capacity re-engagement extraordinarily challenging as a result of driver and manufacturing constraints limiting the supply response.”
Regarding the supply-demand balance, Vieth noted, “The pullback in the freight gauge and a tough seasonal factor on top of that were contributing factors in the sharp decline of the Supply-Demand Balance reading, which dropped 9ppts month-over-month to a 13-month low 50.6 in May. Strong freight visibility suggests this metric will rebound from here as rebalancing continues into the medium-term.”