New truck crunch 'blessing in disguise' when it comes to rates, capacity

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Updated May 13, 2022

Sliding rates and spiking diesel prices have complicated matters for motor carriers that rely heavily on the spot market. Conversely, the contract market is doing fairly well. 

A prolonged period of elevated freight rates pulled more players into the game, and the number of trucks that have entered the market is up 13% compared to last April. 

"We're still adding capacity," DAT Principal Analyst Dean Croke said. "We've added capacity in the last year... The only thing that's stopped a far bigger implosion is the fact that large fleets are only getting two-thirds of the trucks they order. Can you imagine if we'd have been getting new trucks out of factories at the normal rate? We'd have had a repeat of 2019 without a doubt, where we saw record bankruptcies in Q2," he said. 

"The fact we haven't been able to get trucks out of factors has probably been a blessing in disguise because it's moderated the supply."

In this week's 10-44, Jason and Matt talk with Croke and discuss what his he sees in store for freight markets, including his conservative take on a rate rebound during Roadcheck next week.

CCJ's 10-44 is a weekly video feature covering the latest in trucking news and trends, equipment and technology. Subscribe to our YouTube channel here