US transport market in positive territory

US transport businesses are likely to end the year on a strong note, according to US research company FTR.

According to the December issue of FTR’s Trucking Update, capacity utilisation is now retreating from the dangerous 99 per cent level reached earlier in 2014, but the market is expected to remain tight.

“FTR forecasts capacity to ease very modestly in 2015 and, when combined with continued freight growth, rising rates, and falling fuel costs, the index will remain elevated throughout next year,” said Jonathan Starks, FTR’s Director of Transportation Analysis.

“Capacity is still tight, but not nearly as severe as early in 2014. FTR data indicates a drop of nearly 1.5 percentage points in truck utilisation since the high of 99 per cent achieved last winter.”

Starks said fleets were now feeling more bullish about 2015. “While we don’t expect much in the way of additional capacity coming into the system, the carriers are certainly trying to entice drivers, reduce maintenance costs, and enhance fuel economy.”

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