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Friday, May 8, 2020
Logistics Intelligence Brief
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Trucking

Trucking braces for further economic disruptions through 2020

FleetOwner Cristina Commendatore May 7, 2020

As for the balance of the year, suppliers are projecting reductions of 35% versus last year, Anderson said. “The supply chain is only as strong as its weakest link. What we see in terms of inbound shipments is most suppliers are not crippled by delays,” Anderson said. “But about one in five is operating with 50% or fewer inbound shipments coming in. That’s a real and meaningful percentage in terms of how much blockage there will be within our supply chain as we move forward.”

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Shippers/3PLs

Target to acquire same-day delivery tech from Deliv

TechCrunch Megan Rose Dickey and Sarah Perez May 7, 2020

Target,  which already owns on-demand delivery service Shipt, is in the process of acquiring technology assets from same-day delivery service Deliv. The retailer is characterizing the deal as more of an R&D type of acquisition and not one that will have an immediate consumer-facing impact. Deal terms were not disclosed, but we understand the deal price is nowhere near Shipt’s $550 million ballpark, as it’s not an outright acquisition of Deliv’s business. Link:  Target Press Release This New Tech is Helping Target Explore Faster and More Efficient Delivery

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And the malls come tumbling down

Retail Dive Daphne Howland May 7, 2020

By the time the COVID-19 pandemic led to the temporary closure of nearly all retail, traffic at America's malls for years had already been steadily diminishing, sending vacancies up and rents down at many. At 9.7%, the national mall vacancy rate — as measured in the first quarter by Moody's Analytics Reis — is the highest in a decade. Average mall rent in the period did rise 0.5% from the fourth quarter, to $44.08 per square foot. That's a 1.7% year-over-year increase, or 3.6%, cumulatively, over the last three years, according to Reis' report, which was emailed to Retail Dive. That's true in part, however, because in many areas, rent is propped up, not by thriving retailers, but by self storage or entertainment venues like trampoline parks that have taken over what once were retail spaces, the firm said.

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Industry

Plunging diesel prices offer fleets relief — but it may not last

Transport Dive Jim Stinson May 7, 2020

Many trucking experts don't see diesel offsetting costs long term, because it's always a cycle.​ Trucking business officials told Transport Dive they wouldn't bet on cheap fuel. They have seen diesel prices usually creep back up to close to $4 per gallon. "We've dropped to $2 diesel before," said Mike Roeth, executive director of the North American Council for Freight Efficiency. "It always comes back."

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Rail carriers cut capacity as intermodal volume drops 17% in April, the largest fall since 2009

Supply Chain Dive Matt Leonard May 7, 2020

  • U.S. railroads originated 980,535 carloads in April 2020, a 25% year-over-year (YoY) decline, and 1,095,423​ intermodal containers, a 17% YoY drop, according to the latest numbers from the Association of American Railroads.
  • "The 25.2% year-over-year decline in total rail carloads was the worst decline for total carloads for any month since our records begin in 1989, and the 17.2% decline in intermodal loadings in April was the worst since the summer of 2009," AAR Senior Vice President John T. Gray said in a statement.
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Preliminary Class 8 truck orders see lowest order levels in years

Logistics Management May 7, 2020

“April represents the first full month of COVID-19 impacts on the trucking industry, and given broadly halted economic output leading to a sharp drop in freight volumes and rates, as well as more empty miles from fragmented supply chains further impacting carriers’ profitability, a negative order number was within the realm of possibilities,” said Kenny Vieth, ACT’s President and Senior Analyst, in a statement. “We suspect that, as was the case in March, instead of cancelling, order holders are content to move orders from close-in to later build dates, as they analyze the ongoing COVID impact.

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Technology/Innovation

It’s only a matter of time before your business will suffer a cyber-attack

Freight Waves Jack Glenn May 7, 2020

Attackers aren’t so much interested in the nature of your cargo per se; what they really want is access to personally identifiable information (PII). PIIs include but are not limited to names, addresses, bank account numbers and social security information. Cannon explained that hackers target companies with a plethora of personal data files that can easily be used to commit identity theft. Some of the freight sector’s biggest companies have been attacked, including Truckstop.com, which was the victim of a ransomware attack in December 2019 that caused a week-long outage of its services. As reported earlier by FreightWaves, the outage hit at least seven sites owned by the Idaho-based online load board including its app-based load boards, SaferWatch and ShipperMate.

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Trucking technology providers connect on parking availability

The Journal of Commerce Eric Johnson May 7, 2020

It’s not the first time SecurSpace has partnered with adjacent technology providers to amplify its reach. The company has a partnership with Los Angeles-based digital drayage broker NEXT Trucking to provide information on available parking for drivers in NEXT’s network. In early 2019, it established a partnership with ITS ConGlobal, a provider of container yard and depot services, to enable on-demand storage and parking access to ITS Global’s network of facilities across the country. The two companies had been working in partnership in Southern California since 2017. Trucker Tools has been similarly partner-friendly, particularly with a number of transportation management systems (TMS) providers.

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Government/Safety

Postal Service names former New Breed Logistics, XPO executive to top job

DC Velocity May 7, 2020

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) has confirmed former New Breed Logistics and XPO Logistics Inc. executive Louis DeJoy to serve as its newest postmaster general, taking the reins of a troubled agency that has reported several consecutive quarters of wide financial losses as it struggles to balance the loss of stamp revenue in a digital age with the sudden rise of e-commerce parcel delivery. DeJoy comes to the job from a background as CEO of North Carolina-based New Breed Logistics, a contract logistics firm that provided supply chain logistics, program management, and transportation support.

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Industry Doubles Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao’s Call to Fight Trafficking

Transport Topics Eleanor Lamb May 7, 2020

“Thank you to those who answered the Department of Transportation’s call to help put the brakes on human trafficking,” Chao said in a video message issued May 7. “By joining this campaign, you and your team are helping to ensure that our transportation system is not hijacked for evil purposes. You are on the front lines of ensuring the safety of our traveling public, and you are helping to combat this horrendous crime.”

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Iowa Driver Among First in US to Use Technology for CDL Skills Test

Transport Topics Eric Miller May 7, 2020

Lonnie Orr recently passed his commercial driver license skills test, but there was no Iowa Department of Motor Vehicles examiner sitting beside him in the truck’s jump seat, barking commands in his ear. Instead, Orr, who lives in Davenport, was among the first drivers in the U.S. to take advantage of a federal emergency declaration allowing new drivers to maintain COVID-19 social distancing while having their driving abilities evaluated by a state examiner observing from a trailing vehicle. With so many states closing their departments of motor vehicles, and driver training schools temporarily shuttered, the number of new drivers entering the market has slowed considerably, according to Steve Gold, owner of Illinois-based 160 Driving Academy, which has 72 schools nationwide. It is the largest commercial truck driving school in the U.S., graduating 9,000 students in a typical year “Bluetooth, in-cab cameras and cellphones may be used to administer the CDL skills test in a way that allows the examiners to not be physically present in the cab of the vehicle with the driver applicant while conducting the on-road test segment,” the agency said.

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Lawmakers Still Eyeing Highway Bill Despite Coronavirus Relief Efforts

Transport Topics Eugene Mulero May 7, 2020

Legislators are keeping an eye on advancing a new highway policy measure as the federal response to the novel coronavirus dominates much of lawmakers’ time and attention. “Even though the global pandemic upended the congressional schedule as we know it, our committee has been pushing ahead with a surface transportation reauthorization bill and we hope to share more details in the coming weeks,” a spokeswoman for the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee told Transport Topics.

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