Trailers order activity for February barely cracked 13,000 units, the lowest total for the month since the recession of 2009, according data released last week by FTR. February 2020 trailer orders were down 20% month-over-month and 45% year-over-year.
“This is about as much uncertainty as can be injected into the trailer market,” said FTR Vice President of Commercial Vehicles Don Ake. “There are too many unknowns, and this, of course, runs across all sectors of the economy, which means it impacts all segments of trailers. Few fleets are ordering, and no one is placing large orders in this chaotic environment.”
Click here to view our full coverage of the coronavirus' impact on the trucking industry from the leading industry publications of Commercial Carrier Journal, Overdrive, Truckers News and Trucks, Parts, Service.
“With the event cancellations and societal restrictions being implemented in March, it is expected that orders will fall further,” Ake said. “Orders should recover significantly when the situation stabilizes. The [COVID-19 coronavirus] is expected to cause some shifts in freight demand as consumers change their buying habits in the short-term. Fleets have enough equipment to handle current freight volumes, so they can afford to wait until the crisis abates before ordering new trailers.”