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October 2020: New Truck Sales Increase Yet Again!

Freight Transportation Research Associates (FTR) has released its latest wave of sales information regarding new Class 8 trucks. While not a two-year high, October 2018 was higher, the numbers improving upon Septembers’ victory for the trucking industry is still phenomenal.

The Data

New truck sales totaled approximately 40,100 for October, according to FTR. This is an 83% increase from October 2019 and a 26% increase from September 2020 (which was a 55% increase from the month prior).

All evidence points to the trucking industry hitting its stride in both the 2020 holiday season and for the 2021 year to come.

“September was the turning point for the Class 8 market. Fleets became much more confident about future freight demand and began placing large orders to replace older units and for expansion purposes, as capacity tightened,” remarked Don Ake of FTR. “In just a few months, the industry has gone from fear, to hope, to optimism. It appears the industry has sluffed off the uncertainties about the pandemic for now.”

Indeed, the average monthly sales in 2018 approximated 40,000 a month, and this October the industry either approached it within inches, or surpassed it.

Conclusion

In recent months, it seems the sales numbers are continuing to grow, but at a slower rate than in months prior. The same can be said about the freight rates for dry van, flatbed, and reefer hauling across the country. If the current trend continues, it would not be surprising if the November results for both these measurements are stagnate, as in, do not go up or down.

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