According to the latest report issued by ACT Research Co. (ACT), a â€śstrong rebound in net margins for publicly traded truckload (TL) companies in the second calendar quarter is expected to fuel continued improvement in demand for heavy-duty vehicles and trailers. As stated in the latest release of the ACT North American Commercial Vehicle Outlook, the firm projects full-year production of heavy-duty (Class 8) vehicles will be up 26% compared to 2009 and will â€śaccelerate into 2011.â€ť
And ACT sees production of commercial trailers expected to increase by 47% in 2010 and also post strong growth in 2011.
On the other hand, because it is â€śclosely tied to the health of the housing sector,â€ť ACT sees the medium-duty vehicle sector continuing to recover slowly.
â€śTrucker profitability rebounded sharply in the second quarter, fueled by tightening capacity and rising freight rates,â€ť said John Burton, vp-- transportation sector with ACT Research. â€śEven with modest economic growth, commercial vehicle demand should continue to rise as carriers appear to be replacing an aging fleet but not adding capacity.
â€śDemand for new heavy-duty vehicles continues to be well below normal replacement levels,â€ť he continued, â€śmeaning overall fleet capacity is shrinking due to scrappage and export of used tractors.â€ť
That amounts to good news, he explained, as â€śthis will allow truckers to retain pricing leverage and profits.â€ť
ACT publishes new and used commercial vehicle industry data and provides market analysis and forecasting services for both the North America and China commercial-vehicle markets.