New trailer orders in the U.S. recovered somewhat from an anemic June, increasing 22% month over month and showing the first sequential increase in nine months, according to ACT Research.
Trailer orders hit 13,900 units in July, beating June’s volume, which was the weakest month for net trailer orders since September 2009. After accounting for cancellations, net trailer orders in July hit 10,300 units.
“July’s net was 64% below the same month last year, and while the sequential gain was a welcome reversal of recent trend, the volume was still disappointing,” said Frank Maly, director of commercial vehicle transportation analysis and research for ACT Research.
ACT Research has found that trailer manufacturers have already opened up their 2020 order boards for fleets looking to reserve trailers for next year, but the response has been less than stellar.
“The response of fleets to the opportunity for production slots this year was distressing, given that only a few months ago, fleets were clamoring for additional equipment,” said Maly. “They now appear to be very reticent to commit the investment, which isn’t unexpected given economic uncertainties, tariff concerns, lackluster freight volumes and the resulting rate pressures.”