ACT Research reports its preliminary estimate for January 2019 net trailer orders is 25,800 units.
Final volume will be available later this month, ACT said, but its preliminary estimate is expected to within +/- 3% of the final order tally.
“While the industry had the weakest January order volume since 2016, it was still sufficient enough to generate very minor order-board growth,” said Frank Maly, ACT’s director of CV transportation analysis and research.
“January net orders were off 7% versus December and 35% down year-over-year. Slower dry van and reefer trailer volume contributed to the declines. Indications are lower orders were not the result of weak fleet demand, as some OEMs report unwillingness to accept additional orders that would extend order boards that, according to some reports, already fill available 2019 build slots.”
Maly also said the slight gain in the order board means January was the third consecutive month the industry posted an all-time record backlog, although the pace of improvement is beginning to wane.
“With backlogs extending through the year for dry vans and reefers, OEMs would likely need to quickly open 2020 order books to allow for further backlog growth in the near-term,” he said. “Also, although the industry reported the highest monthly cancellations since August 2016, the rate of cancellations versus the order board remains well within acceptable limits.”