A few key points in the STB reauthorization legislation are raising the number of STB board members, giving the STB investigative authority, protecting rail shippers’ rates, creating strong service for rail shippers, preventing rail carriers on collaborating on rates and improving access to shipper relief. While this bill would be great for rail shippers in many aspects, the effects on rail carriers could be felt in pricing long-term.
With President Obama’s call for more infrastructure investment, a strong ally from the Republican side has developed in John Mica, House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman. Mica presents the possibility of garnering more private investments from businesses and organizations that could be positively affected by the rail plans.
With one of the largest winter storms ever to hit the US leaving trucks stranded along the US highways, transportation and business operations for much of the US have been delayed or put on hold. One of the top LTL carriers has had 850 loads cancelled by shippers due to the winter storms.
With the recent edition of the Trucking Update by FTR Associates, their Trucking Conditions Index is showing signs that it may be ahead of the curve with the improving economy. The increased vehicle utilization and solid pricing power for carriers over the next few years could show a continued increase in this index.
TransCore’s DAT Network of load boards showed a nationwide increase in freight availability for flatbeds, while availability for reefers and dry vans remained stable.
– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst