Trucking Conditions Index stayed strong in December

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The December Trucking Conditions Index from FTR Associates showed a good environment for the industry, FTR announced this week, saying that industry growth and overall economic growth will continue, despite what some analysts predict. 

The Index read in December 8.38 — bearing down on 10, which FTR says would be a “signal that volumes, prices and margins are likely to be in a solidly favorable range for trucking companies.”

Whenever the Index is above zero, the market is yielding a positive environment for trucking, says FTR. 

The forecasting firm also predicts that the Index will shoot up in the middle of this year, riding the coattails of market tightness spurred by changing regulations and growth in freight. 

“The amount of capacity that will be affected by the rules is enough for us to expect an impact on rates; however, outside of spot rates, we are unlikely to see it show up in the data until the end of 2013,” says Jonathan Starks, director of transportation analysis for FTR. “If the economic recovery continues during 2014 we could see a very strong year for rate increases throughout the industry.”