According to ACT Research, preliminary North America Class 8 net order data show the industry booked 10,800 units in May, dropping 27% from April, but down a more significant 70% from year-ago May.
These numbers are preliminary. Complete industry data for May, including final order numbers, will be published by ACT Research in mid-June.
“Fraying freight market and rate conditions along with a still-large Class 8 order backlog contributed to the worst NA Class 8 net order performance since July of 2016,” said Kenny Vieth, ACT president and senior analyst. “May saw NA Class 8 orders fall below the 15,900 units averaged through the year’s first trimester, and year-to-date Class 8 net orders have contracted 64% compared to the first five months of 2018.”
Regarding the medium duty market, Vieth explained, “While the US manufacturing/freight economy has been droopy since late 2018, the medium-duty market continues to benefit from the underlying strength in the consumer economy. In May, NA Classes 5-7 net orders were 19,300 units, down 21% year-over-year and 19% from April. One has to look back 22 months to find a weaker medium-duty order month on an actual basis or just 2 months when looking at the data on a seasonally adjusted basis.”
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