Earnings reports from Q2 show that tighter capacity and increasing freight volumes could indicate a bit of a brighter future for the trucking industry. Fleetowner reports that, for example, J.B. Hunt has seen some improved performance:
“Firmer demand and a strengthening freight environment helped utilization improve 13% over the comparable year’s quarter” for J.B. Hunt’s truckload operations, said Kirk Thompson, president & CEO, in J.B. Hunt’s earnings release.
The carrier noted revenue from its truckload division increased 8%, despite a 13% reduction in tractors. Currently, J.B. Hunt said its tractor count stands at 2,769 compared to 3,169 in 2009.
“Non-paid empty miles per load were 14% lower in 2010 than in 2009, while demand for paid empty charges to reposition equipment was significant,” Thompson said. “Spot rates per loaded mile, excluding fuel surcharges, improved 30% on a 9% longer length of haul, compared to a year ago, and 31% sequentially from the first quarter of this year.”
Cheetah recommends cautious optimism, with an eye to continued improvements in efficiency and productivity.