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Truck Sales Boom for Rush Enterprises

Rush Enterprises, Inc., operator of a network of heavy-duty truck dealerships in North America, posted strong year-over-year profit and revenue gains. Profits rose 72% to $5.5 million as revenues increased 33.3% to $296.9 million over the same period last year.

The company delivered 1,546 heavy-duty trucks, 458 medium-duty trucks and 673 used trucks during the third quarter, a year-over-year increase of 51%, 72%, and a used truck sales drop of 2%, respectively.

The company cites pent-up demand for the dramatic increase in truck sales. “We were probably 200,000 units behind replacement demand going into the beginning of this year,” said Rush Enterprises chairman Marvin Rush during a phone conference on quarterly earnings. “We’re looking at a couple years just to catch up with replacement cycles.”

Although it is possible that recent driver shortages may have stopped truck sales from being as brisk as they could be, it does not appear to be a major concern to the company. “Trucking companies are careful with capital spending because of driver shortages,” said Rush. “But capacity is at its highest level in 10 years. [Carriers] are showing good discipline but as long as the economy remains strong, there’s going to be the need for someone to expand.”

The company also noted that the string of hurricanes in August have some short-term disruptions in business, but will be offset by long-term gains as municipal reconstruction efforts are expected to funnel in revenues.

“Given the expansion of the economy we’re going to have a nice run the next couple of years and possibly past that,” Rush said.

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