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Act Trailers Aug

ACT August final: Trailer orders up 49% from July

Sept. 18, 2020
Large fleet orders drive growth; OEMs wonder if surge has 'legs,' analyst Maly says

August net US trailer orders of 28,139 units were a significant improvement (up 49%) from July’s uptick and well above August 2019’s level (up 160%), according to this month’s issue of ACT Research’s State of the Industry: U.S. Trailer Report. Before accounting for cancellations, new orders of 29k units were up 46% versus July and 96% better year-over-year,

ACT Research’s State of the Industry: U.S. Trailers report provides a monthly review of the current US trailer market statistics, as well as trailer OEM build plans and market indicators divided by all major trailer types, including backlogs, build, inventory, new orders, cancellations, net orders, and factory shipments. It is accompanied by a database that gives historical information from 1996 to the present, as well as a ready-to-use graph packet, to allow organizations in the trailer production supply chain, and those following the investment value of trailers and trailer OEMs and suppliers, to better understand the market.

Conversations in recent months have indicated a change in fleet perspective, frequently phrased as more requests for quotes, ongoing negotiations, or a simple statement that ‘the phone is ringing a lot more lately’,” said Frank Maly, Director–CV Transportation Analysis and Research at ACT Research. He added, “That shift started in late June, and we saw a minor gain in orders in July.

However, it’s still not all sunshine, as August’s orders included a substantial amount of large fleet demand, with strong e-commerce support, which bodes well for dry vans and reefers, but provides minimal benefit for vocational categories. With large fleets seeing better volumes and rates, they may be moving with a more bullish perspective than we perceive, and while trailer OEMs welcome the interest, they are wondering if the recent order strength has ‘legs’.”