May was another solid month for trailer orders but with weaker than projected production and bottlenecks in the supply chain, it may be a while before fleets receive their equipment.
Net trailer orders were 22,900 units in May, according to ACT Research, which was down slightly from the month before, though a drop was expected. However, compared to May 2017 orders were up 27%, the 18th straight month of year-over-year increases.
“Fleets must now patiently await delivery of the trailers that fill the vast majority of this year’s production slots,” said Frank Maly, Director–CV Transportation Analysis and Research at ACT Research.
Dry van trailer orders increased in May, offsetting seasonally adjusted declines in most other trailer categories. But with the boom in equipment orders and only a slight increase in production, industry production now appears to be committed through Christmas, according to ACT Research.
“May build of 27,900 trailers (not seasonally adjusted) was up 3% month-over-month, but off 5% when seasonal adjustments were applied,” said Maly. “This could be the first indication that some of the industry’s usual build season production increases might be a bit more elusive this year, despite the robust orderboard.”