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Logistics Intelligence Brief
Tuesday, October 18, 2022

Trucking

Peak parcel surcharges likely to stick despite slowing demand, carrier overcapacity

Freight Waves Mark Solomon October 17, 2022

“We’d be very surprised if national parcel carriers blink on this year’s peak surcharges,” said Bascome Majors, transport analyst for Susquehanna Investment Group. “Inflation is still rampant even if the peak proves weak.”

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Industry

Diesel Up 11.5¢ to $5.339 a Gallon

Transport Topics October 17, 2022

• Diesel now costs on average $1.668 more than it did at this time in 2021.
• The average price of trucking’s main fuel rose in all 10 regions in EIA’s survey, ranging from 44.6 cents in New England to just one cent in California.
• Diesel in California costs 50.2 cents more for a gallon than in the next-most-expensive region (West Coast).

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September US Class 8 Retail Sales Stay Strong

Transport Topics Roger Gilroy October 14, 2022

U.S. Class 8 retail sales in September were nearly 23,000 and reached the second-highest total this year, Wards Intelligence reported.
Sales rose 34.1% to 22,971 compared with 17,131 a year earlier. August produced the most sales so far, 23,581, according to Wards.
Five truck makers posted double-digit gains, with International up 85%, the largest sales increase, and Peterbilt Motors Co. up 73.7%, the next highest gain.

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TikTok appears to be making a push for a logistics rollout

Logistics Management Jeff Berman October 14, 2022

But a close read of the Axios report raises some interesting points, noting that its plans to build U.S.-based fulfillment centers “could directly challenge Amazon,” coupled with the report highlighting several logistics-related job openings posted by TikTok on LinkedIn, for positions such as a logistics solutions manager for a global fulfillment center and a fulfillment logistics manager, among others.
The job description for the former explained various aspects of the position, including: inventory movement among different warehouses, B2B transport, B2C transport, parcel consolidation, direct line-haul, volume forecast and allocation, merchant inventory control; and inventory management, production plan, tailored as easy-to-use and scalable solutions for target merchants. TikTok added in its job descriptions featured in the Axios report that the global fulfillment center is “responsible for growing our logistics solution,” and includes product fulfillment by TikTok to its sellers by “providing warehousing, delivery, and customer service returns.”

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Technology/Innovation

Meet the Army of Robots Coming to Fill In for Scarce Workers

The Wall Street Journal Christopher Mimms October 15, 2022

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A combination of hard-pressed employers, technological leaps and improved cost effectiveness has fueled a rapid expansion of the world’s robot army. A half-million industrial robots were installed globally last year, according to data released Thursday by the trade group International Federation of Robotics—an all-time high exceeding the previous record, set in 2018, by 22%.
The total population of industrial robots in the world has now also reached an all-time high, 3.5 million, which exceeds the population of every U.S. city save New York and Los Angeles, according to the federation.

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Government/Safety/Sustainability

Truckers Win Over BNSF in Case Regarding Illinois Biometrics Law

Chicago Tribune/Transport Topics Sarah Freishtat October 17, 2022

In the federal lawsuit, Richard Rogers, a truck driver for a third-party company, said BNSF requires drivers to use fingerprints and “related biometric information” to access the railroad’s intermodal facilities. But the railroad failed to get written consent before collecting and storing biometric information and failed to disclose in writing the purpose for which it was collecting and storing the data, violating Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act, he said in the suit.
The class action lawsuit covered about 45,000 members. After the judgment, entered Oct. 12, each could get about $5,000.

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5 trucking behaviors are strongly linked to future crashes: ATRI

Transport Dive David Taube October 17, 2022

• Five driving behaviors are “strong indicators” of future truck crashes, according to ATRI’s latest crash predictor report.
• Those leading indicators, according to the report published this month, are: a reckless driving violation, failure to use/improper signal conviction, a past crash, failure to yield right-of-way violation and an improper or erratic lane changes conviction.
• The study involved data from 2017 through 2018, due to a delay in FMCSA reporting, covering nearly 584,000 truck drivers and 38,797 crashes.

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USDOT Updates National Safety Strategy

Transport Topics Eugene Mulero October 17, 2022

Additional safety strategies for the nation’s mobility networks were recently announced by the U.S. Department of Transportation as part of its comprehensive plan.
A framework known as the “Safe Systems Approach,” was endorsed to create multiple layers of protection for the public via safer people, roads and vehicles, speed management, and improvements to post-crash care. “The ‘Safe System Approach’ holistically builds and reinforces multiple layers of protection to both prevent crashes from happening in the first place, and minimize the harm caused to those involved when crashes do occur,” per background USDOT provided.
Link: Department of Transportation What Steps Is U.S. DOT Taking to Implement the National Roadway Safety Strategy?

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Workforce

What Outperformers Do Differently to Tap Internal Talent

MIT Sloan Management Review Nithya Vaduganathan et al. October 17, 2022

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According to Pew Center Research data, more than 60% of U.S. employees who quit their jobs in the past year cited a lack of career advancement opportunities as a leading reason for leaving, and a recent study by researchers at the MIT Sloan School of Management, New York University’s Stern School of Business, and Revelio Labs found that lateral career opportunities are more than twice as important as compensation in predicting employee retention. Additionally, lateral moves and promotions allow employees to experience professional growth and develop new skills. Yet our research finds that only 10% of job opportunities today are filled with internal lateral hires.
While often overlooked as a lever for talent, offering employees lateral moves can be an untapped gold mine for companies. By adopting leading practices for internal mobility, companies can better deploy existing worker capacity and benefit from more successful hires who hit the ground running in new roles with greater institutional knowledge, higher levels of engagement and retention, and even improved gender equity. At the same time, employees benefit from meaningful skill and career development opportunities that better align with their goals, making this a win-win for employers and employees alike.

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