5 Factors impacting logistics in September

Whether you’re a shipper, receiver, or carrier, it’s good to be in the know about what is impacting the world of logistics. Check out some headlines from September that are impacting the transportation industry.

Oil prices jump as Hurricane Florence adds to supply concerns

Earlier in September, crude oil prices jumped 3 percent as Hurricane Florence headed for the eastern coast of the United States. West Texas Intermediate increased nearly $2 a barrel to $69.45. Brent, the international benchmark, rose $1.67 a barrel bringing cost to trade above $79. Last month, the International Energy Agency stated the oil sanctions could make maintaining global supply “very challenging and would come at the expense of maintaining an adequate spare capacity cushion.” With the goal to cut out Iranian oil imports to zero, it isn’t yet clear if the U.S. will grant waivers to countries to try to avoid supply shocks. After Florence, West Texas Intermediate crude oil price for October is around $68.99 with Brent at $78.09 a barrel. Click here to read more about oil concerns.

Freight activity out of the North Carolina coast drops by more than 60%

The level of rain dumped on North Carolina coastal cities has destroyed the local economy and infrastructure. Damage estimates from the storm are as high as $50 billion. This has majorly impacted freight flow throughout the region and country. Carriers are rejecting loads into the market and outbound freight has all but dried up. At the end of August, Wilmington, NC market peaked at .18 percent of all truckload freight in the U.S., before dropping to .06 percent the week following Hurricane Florence. That’s a loss of 67 percent off the peak number. This turns out to be a loss of nearly $15 million from the trucking market out of Wilmington, NC. These numbers do not take into consideration the increase of activity into the market due to relief efforts and additional volume of truckloads that are expected in future months for reconstruction.

Hours of service comment period extended to Oct. 10

Those wanting to weight in on potential hours-of-service changes will have extra time to submit comments on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s request for feedback. FMCSA announced it is extending the comment deadline until Wednesday, October 10. The Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking published in August doesn’t propose any changes to the current HOS regulations but lists questions to gather input from drivers, owner-operators, carriers, and other industry stakeholders. For more information on FMCSA’s feedback request, click here.

Four fleets announce driver pay changes

USA Trucks, Super Service LLC, Big G Express, and Walmart have all announced pay increases or bonus opportunities for their truck drivers. Some increases include cents-per-mile base pay increase, performance plus pay programs, larger sign-on bonuses, and referral bonuses.

NAFTA’s latest deadline day comes and goes without Canada deal

United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland met on September 20 to negotiate terms for NAFTA, however no agreement was reached. This date is said by some involved in the NAFTA negotiations to have been a target deadline for the U.S. to sign an accord prior to December 1, which is when Mexico’s new president is set to take office. For now, the countries remain in a state of continuous negotiation. To read up on what’s next for NAFTA negotiations, click here. Like keeping up with great industry information? Subscribe to our blog at the top right of the page!