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E-Logging, CSA Scores, and Capacity All on the Rise

Citing the Business Expectations Survey, conducted quarterly by Transport Capital Partners, reports that carriers are increasingly installing e-log systems on their fleets. The survey shows that 35% of carriers have implemented e-logging systems on their entire fleet. Just 10% of survey responders report that they have yet to begin implementation.

Another trend from the survey indicates that carriers are making efforts to improve CSA scores, but not without expense. “The cost of compliance, along with decreasing productivity, the corresponding decrease in driver earnings, and the planned tightening of hours-of-service rules are part of the regulatory burden which has both directly and indirectly impacted carriers,” said TCP partner Richard Mikes.

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Tonnage Up, Optimistic Capacity Expectations from Carriers reports on the results of the Transport Capital Partners Business Expectations Survey. The first quarter 2013 survey found that carriers are optimistic in their plans to increase capacity in the year ahead. Just over a third of carriers surveyed plan to add 5% or less in capacity, while 20% of carriers plan to increase by 6-10%.

The article also discusses the American Trucking Associations’ (ATA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index for February. The report shows that tonnage has increased four months in a row – something that has not happened since late 2011.

Bob Costello, ATA chief economist, is also optimistic:

“Fitting with several other key economic indicators, truck tonnage is up earlier than we anticipated this year. While I think this is a good sign for the industry and the economy, I’m still concerned that freight tonnage will slow in the months ahead as the federal government sequester continues and households finish spending their tax returns. A little longer term, I think the economy and the industry are poised for a more robust recovery.”

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To learn more about carriers’ expectations for capacity increases, read the full article.

Dutro Quoted About Capacity Expectations

Steven Dutro, TCP managing partner, was recently quoted in an article by Transport Topics about Transport Capital Partners’  First Quarter 2013 Business Expectations Survey. The survey that found that almost two-thirds of carriers plan to increase capacity in the next 12 months. TCP believes that the increases in capacity will most likely be intermodal, dedicated carriage, and other specific business lines.

“Going into the recession, publicly owned carriers cut trucks 20% to 25%, and they have not added back more. Most trucks are being sold as replacements,” Steven Dutro, TCP partner, said in a statement.

For more information about the survey, visit the survey page:

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Carriers Hesitate to Replace Equipment

As reported by, the Fourth Quarter 2012 Business Expectations Survey by Transport Capital Parters finds that most carriers plan to be very conservative when it comes to replacing fleet equipment. The survey found that 60% of smaller carriers and 45% of larger carriers plan to replace less than 10% of their fleets. TCP Partner Richard Mikes noted, “Capacity additions have been constrained for some time and linked to shippers’ desire to add dedicated capacity to assure service.” Larger carriers with “adequate profit margins” are more likely to grow, remarked TCP Partner Steven Dutro.

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Carriers Unsure What to Expect in 2013

The Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association reports that an uncertain economy paints a cloudy picture for the trucking industry. Carriers are split as to whether rates will increase or stay flat, and only 21% of carriers reported rate increases over the past three months. This does not bode well for drivers’ pay, notes TCP Partner Steven Dutro. “Driver pay increases will be constrained by these stagnant rates. It will be a tough balancing act for carriers to keep drivers. Investment in capacity is also likely to continue to slow,” he said.

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Carriers Holding Steady in Flat Economy

From a November 11 article from BigTruckTV, slow growth in the US economy matches the trend in the trucking industry. According to TCP Partner Richard Mikes, “Carriers are not adding capacity as the economy remains relatively flat, used equipment prices go up and conservative equipment plans boost used demand.”

For TCP Partner Lana Batts, “Long term demographics still portend a shrinking driver pool, and current CSA and HOS regulations remove drivers and shorten effective hours (and pay checks) for existing drivers. Some runs that were doable in a day are requiring a sleep break.”

Drivers Pay Likely to Increase reports that three-quarters of carriers are expecting to increase wages in the coming year in an effort to reduce driver turnover. The information comes from the Third Quarter Business Expectation Survey by Transport Capital Partners.

Uncertainty with how the upcoming presidential election will affect health care policies is also a concern for carriers, but not as much as was reported a year ago. TCP Partner Steven Dutro claims, “Without better pay and affordable health care for drivers, carriers will not be able to increase capacity for shippers.” Read the full article here.

BES Survey Points to Limited Growth in Capacity

As reported on Refrigerated Transporter, carriers are not likely to add much capacity in the coming year. According to the quarterly Business Expectations Survey from Transport Capital Partners, the number of carriers expecting to add little or no capacity has remained between 70% and 74% for the past five quarters. TCP Partner Lana Batts cites driver shortages, coupled with CSA and HOS regulations, as having a diminishing effect on equipment purchases.

Freight Carriers Reluctant to Add Capacity

The Third Quarter 2012 Business Expectations Survey from TCP shows that carriers remain slow to add capacity to their fleets. TCP Partner Richard Mikes notes an increase in the used equipment market, while Partner Lana Batts acknowledges the effects of a shrinking driver pool. Read the full article on Automotive World.

Carrier Capacity Unlikely to Expand in Coming Year reports that “Few Carriers Expect to Add Much Capacity in Next Year,” citing Transport Capital Partners’ Third Quarter 2012 Business Expectations Survey. TCP Partner Richard Mikes notes, “Carriers are not adding capacity as the economy remains relatively flat and used equipment prices go up and conservative equipment plans boost used demand.” Read the full article here.