Although forecasts say the first quarter of 2023 will be particularly tough for the trucking industry. Trucking industry remains the most relied-upon freight transport mode in the U.S. High fuel and equipment prices, labor concerns, shipping rates, inflation, talks of a recession, and other economic factors have followed trucking into what is a historically quiet season for imports and consumer demand at the start of a new year. Because of these lingering headwinds, for the first quarter, carriers are likely concerned about a decrease in rates due to an oversupply of capacity built up from 2021.
The market, however, is cyclical, and trucking remains the most relied-upon freight transport mode in the U.S., with trucks moving some 12.5 billion tons of freight valued at more than $13.1 trillion.
The annual trucking industry statistics report tells commercial trucking companies what they’ve been experiencing for nearly two years now. In 2021, the costs for rail, truck, and water transportation services reached their all-time high level, suggesting an increase in the costs businesses face for providing these services. Inflation remained persistently high year-over-year in September, dropping slightly in October. DAT also pointed out that carriers operating in the spot market have felt “more pain than most. There should be some relief on the revenue side of the ledger by mid-year, but the focus will be on the expense side of the books in 2023,” . The good news is that the long-term U.S. Energy Information Administration forecast has diesel prices coming down. Some experts think there is still room for diesel prices to continue dropping, so I think the general consensus is that diesel prices will continue to come down.
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