FTR says heavy truck orders up for fourth consecutive month

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FTR Associates has released preliminary data showing Class 8 net orders for all major North American OEMs totaled 10,817 units in September, the fourth consecutive month that orders have shown a month-over-month increase.

Year-to-date orders through September are 5.2 percent ahead of the same period in 2008, reflecting the first year-over-year increase since June 2008. The figure includes orders for the United States, Canada, Mexico and exports. Order activity for September represents an annualized rate of 129,804.

“FTR still believes that any increases we are seeing now are partially driven by abnormal industry activity ahead of the 2010 EPA emissions mandate,” says Eric Starks, president of Nashville, Ind.-based FTR. “The data we track does not support any significant purchasing activity driven by increased freight demand any time soon. We continue to advise our clients to expect a continued soft recovery at least through 2010.”

Final data for September will be available from FTR later in the month as part of its North American Commercial Truck & Trailer Outlook service.