TRAILER manufacturers shifted into a higher gear in the second quarter, according to figures compiled by Economic Planning Associates Inc (EPA Inc).
After losing a little momentum in the first three months of 2005, trailer shipments bounced back in the second quarter. The industry shipped 63,400 trailers between April and the end of June, 12.0% ahead of the similar quarter of last year, according to EPA Inc.
In addition to topping year-earlier levels, second quarter shipments represented a 7.3% advance from the opening quarter, compared with the 2.3% quarterly gain manufacturers posted in the first quarter.
Gains in trailer demand were widespread. Van and non-van shipments scored impressive gains both on a quarter-to-quarter basis as well as in year-over-year performances.
Second quarter total van shipments were running 9.6% ahead of last year's second quarter. Dry freight vans were up 9.5% while insulated units were 8.9% higher than the year ago level. “All other” vans including drop frames, livestock, and open tops chalked up a 12.5% gain over last year.
Continued strong activities in the construction markets, the revival in durable goods manufacturing, a rebound in capital goods demand, and increasingly stringent regulations concerning the movement of industrial liquids and gases, all served to stimulate demand for a variety of trailers in the non-van segment that saw second quarter shipments rise 19.6% over the similar period of last year.
Year-over-year double-digit gains were recorded in the tank, platform, dump, and low bed categories. Even the smaller bulk and “all other” segments scored impressive gains last quarter.