Trucks at Work

The “not” list for 2015

John Larkin, managing director & head of transportation capital markets research for Wall Street investment firm Stifel Nicolaus & Co., is never one to provide half-hearted prognostications where the freight industry is concerned – especially regarding the ongoing truck driver shortage.

A good case in point is Larkin’s most recent analysis; what he is wryly dubbing the ‘not” list for 2015 – as in predictions about what won’t happen this year.

It’s a fairly broad list, too; one touching on everything from truck driver pay to Congressional efforts to pass a multi-year surface transportation bill.

So without further ado, let’s take a look at some of things Larkin believes won’t materialize in 2015:

  • Truck driver pay hikes will NOT solve the driver crisis
  • Winter weather in the first quarter of 2015 will NOT be as debilitating or more debilitating compared to the first quarter of 2014.
  • Chicago-related congestion will NOT be easily solved with committee work and the multifaceted CREATE project.
  • Fuel cost reductions will NOT help public truckload carriers.
  • Congress will NOT develop a long-term, cogent, well-funded highway/transportation infrastructure revitalization plan
  • The tax extenders bill – designed to promote investment in transportation infrastructure and rolling stock – will NOT be passed at the beginning of the year.
  • Truckload sector merger and acquisition activity will NOT take a breather.
  • Logistics companies – particularly TL and LTL brokers – will NOT continue to see robust conditions in 2015.

Sadly, Larkin’s last prediction doesn’t augur well for fans of the Baltimore Ravens NFL football team: he does NOT expect the purple-and-black to win the Super Bowl this year.

And as the Ravens face the New England Patriots in the divisional round of the playoffs this upcoming weekend – on their home turf, no less – there’s a very high percentage that the final item on Larkin’s “not” list will become reality.

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