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Saturday, October 19, 2013

Trucking Index Moves Higher, Debt Ceiling, Regulations Shadow Projections

Trucking Index Moves Higher, Debt Ceiling, Regulations Shadow Projections
Posted: Oct 11, 2013 03:29 PM | Last Updated: Oct 11, 2013 03:29 PM

BLOOMINGTON, IN. — FTR's Trucking Conditions Index (TCI) for August moved a full point higher from July.

"The increase moves the index to an expected peak this fall before conditions deteriorate somewhat as the industry absorbs the impact of the Hours of Service rule changes," FTR said.

Based on FTR's projections, conditions for truck fleets are slated to stabilize in 2014 — at least until more FMCSA regulatory plans are made public.

The coming regulatory environment aside, the U.S. government shutdown and debt ceiling deadline is what FTR is watching closely.

"Prior to the government shutdown on October 1st, economic and industry data was pointing to a possible uptick in demand as we head into the final stretch of 2013. The length of the shutdown and the outcome of the debt ceiling fight will play a big part in deciding if that acceleration is realized," said Jonathan Starks, director of transportation analysis for FTR.

"We continue to expect a resolution to both issues prior to the debt ceiling being reached on October 17; however, the longer this plays out the more difficult it becomes to see a solid agreement taking shape. While the shutdown is a tough pill to swallow in a slow-growth economy, the effects of not raising the debt ceiling would be much more dramatic and devastating. We are hopeful that a compromise solution can be crafted before that occurs"


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