ACT Research Indicates COVID-19 Impacting CV Markets



According to ACT Research’s Transportation Digest, key truck transportation metrics of January and February data may show a global supply chain disruption that took place initially in China. The report notes that data have not yet reflected the COVID-19 impact on the North American commercial vehicle markets or fully show the supply chain disruptions that have spread around the world.

The report, which combines proprietary ACT data and analysis of a wide variety of industry sources, painted a comprehensive picture of trends impacting transportation and commercial vehicle markets. This monthly report is designed as a quick look into transportation insights for use by fleet and trucking executives, reviewing top-level considerations such as for-hire indices, freight, heavy and medium-duty segments, the US trailer market, used truck sales information, and an overview of the US macroeconomy.

“COVID-19 has taken center stage since February, and has engendered a reality of significant human tragedy, as well as concerns about a substantial weakening in the global economic outlook,” said Kenny Vieth, ACT’s president and senior analyst. “In such an environment, economic information will take the ‘back seat,’ as pre-COVID data points fall outside of the context of the new reality. Given the slow dawning of the impact, we would put most March datapoints on the pre-COVID side of the ledger.”

Vieth continued, “Although not official yet, we believe that the US economy entered a recessionary phase starting in March, and with much still unknown about the virus’ effect and the path that recovery could take, assessments remain fluid. ACT continues to evaluate our baseline scenarios for North America, but our current modeling indicates significant economic weakness through Q2 and into Q3, with CV market demand following.” Additionally, Vieth indicated that beyond spending on consumer services, manufacturing, retail, housing, energy, travel and related services, including freight transport, are the most vulnerable industries.

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