Today’s Pickup: Trump and China give freight markets one less thing to think about

(Photo:JardonB Wikimedia Commons)

Good day,

The stock market appears to be stabilizing after a rough start to the spring. General market indicators tend to agree that the economy is still in a good position amidst all the distraction and hyperbole over the back and forth with Trump and China. Reports of a “cooling off” between the US and China have made headlines the past few days with both parties figuratively hugging it out as Trump says President XI and he will “always be friends”.

Those involved in transportation should rest somewhat easier knowing the potential “trade war” threats have subsided for now. Not that any of what has happened has had any immediate impact to the shipping industry, but with freight prices stabilizing at all time highs, ELD mandates, and driver retention issues, the industry seems to have enough on its plate.

Did you know?

The average price of the model year 2016 fell the highest since its January pricing, selling 16.3% lower at $75,893. 


“The good news is we picked up 19,000 drivers last year. The bad news is we’re still about 50,000 short.”

-Damon Langley, TMW analyst, on the ongoing driver demand

In other news:

UPS CIO: Use tech disruption to better serve customers

Logistics professionals heard about supply chain priorities and technology from one of their peers at Monday’s keynote when Juan Perez, CIO and chief engineering officer for UPS, took the stage. (SupplyChain24/7)

Air freight volumes rise 7% at top 20 airports

Air freight volumes at the top 20 cargo airports grew 6.8% last year.  (The LoadStar)

UPS flight dispatchers vote to authorize strike

Flight dispatchers who work for United Parcel Service Inc. have authorized their elected union leaders to call a strike if needed. (Bizjournals)

Maersk expands online platform service scope

Maersk Line takes further steps towards simplifying the supply chains of its customers by expanding the service scope on its online platform to cover more major trades and addressing customers’ pain points. (Maritime Professional)

Rail traffic jumps as trucking crunch forces shippers to get creative

Rail traffic is showing signs of upward pressure potentially related to the trucking industry capacity. (Supplychaindive)

Final Thoughts:

In an article posted on FreightWaves yesterday the AI startup, SenseTime Group, raised $600M from investors making it the most valued in the sector in the world. SenseTime specializes in image detection and learning how to interact with what it sees. The main use of this tech has been in China where citizens are monitored in their everyday activities as it “learns” how they behave. It may not be surprising for Americans to hear this being the case in China, but hearing trucking companies are utilizing it to improve safety makes me feel better… a little. 

Hammer down everyone!

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Zach Strickland, FW Market Expert & Market Analyst

Zach Strickland, the “Sultan of SONAR,” curates the weekly market update. Zach is also a one of FreightWaves’ Market Experts. With a degree in Finance, Strickland spent the early part of his career in banking before transitioning to transportation in various roles and segments, such as truckload and LTL. He has over 13 years of transportation experience, specializing in data, pricing, and analytics.