ACT Research released its preliminary U.S. net trailer orders data for September 2016, showing a decline from the previous month and weaker than anticipated order pace.

Trailer orders are expected to reach 12,950 units for the month once ACT finalizes its numbers, reflecting a drop of 16% from August. September is a month where trailer order activity historically increases significantly. Based on ACT’s numbers, order activity is at one-third of last year’s levels.

“An extremely strong September 2015 set a very high bar for year-over-year comparison; this estimate shows September volume approximately 65% below the same month last year,” said Frank Maly, ACT’s director of commercial vehicle transportation analysis and research. “It is apparent that the 2016/17 trailer order season has stumbled out of the gates to a very slow start.”

ACT believes that this lower order activity is representative of the caution fleets expressed regarding equipment investment in this order cycle. In a small concession, cancellation rates were easing compared to recent months but were still higher than in the same period of 2015.