To the relief of truck companies like Titan Transline, the North American trucking industry has seen a bit of recovery, with preliminary Class 8 truck orders topping 40,000 in October 2020, a 2-year high. The sudden spike is attributed to consumer demand, which drove higher freight rates and trucking profits, which resulted in fleets ordering equipment across the region.
FTR Transportation Intelligence reported that total orders totaled to 40,100 units, the first time since October 2018 where orders managed to go past 40,000. Bookings went up by 26% from September 2020 and up 83% from 2019. Using a rolling 12-month basis, Class 8 orders sit at 215,000 units.
ACT Research, a competing analysis firm, had different numbers compared to FTR, but the trend was similar. ACT recorded that North American Class 8 orders sit at 38,900 units, a 27% increase from September 2020, and 78% increase from October 2019.
Trucking companies in North America like Titan Transline are making orders for equipment as they recover from the lockdown, with orders staying strong until 2021. Lots of fleets across the region are making orders for Class 8 trucks for 2021 delivery.
The US Department of Commerce, notably, reported that consumer retail sales went up in September, the fifth month in a row.
FTR Vice President of Commerce says that the month was the turning point for the Class 8 market, as it was the month where fleets saw the consistent recovery of the market, becoming more confident about the future of freight, and making big orders for replacing older units and expanding.
He summed up September as the month where the North American trucking industry threw off fears about the pandemic, at least temporarily.
ACT Research President and Senior Analyst Kenny Vieth says that carriers are making lots of profits due to increased rates, which is considered a trigger for equipment orders.
Vieth notes that there’s always been a symbiotic relationship between carrier profitability and demand for Class 8 equipment; truckers that make more money can afford to upgrade their fleet, order new equipment, and cut down on their tax bill.