May trailer order rise confirmed but market still well below normal

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ACT Research announced Monday U.S. trailer orders for May of 3,107 units — a significant improvement from April but still well behind May 2019’s level, down 71 percent year over year. Before accounting for cancellations, new orders of 7,400 units were up 29 percent versus April, the company says.

“Although up from April’s record low, May’s net orders will still rank as the second weakest in industry history,” says Frank Maly, director, CV transportation analysis and research, ACT Research. “There is little incentive for fleets to invest in new equipment right now.”

FTR also reported poor trailer order numbers for May.

“While there has been a general reopening of the U.S. economy and some post-quarantine consumer-generated surges have been reported, caution continues to be the watchword,” says Maly. “Significant apprehension is being expressed about small-to-medium fleets, and the concern is that the PPP lifelines many may have grasped will runout before a post-lockdown economy generates freight at sufficient volumes and profitable rates, which will have serious implications for both trailer OEMs and dealers.”

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