How’s the LTL sector doing where you’re at?

Discussion in 'LTL and Local Delivery Trucking Forum' started by McUzi, Mar 1, 2020.

  1. McUzi

    McUzi Heavy Load Member

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    All of my friends from different FXF centers are saying the same thing. City drivers struggling to make 35 hours, bottom half of the linehaul board sitting home etc. These are all guys in New England based centers.

    How’s it looking where you are, and Is any of this nonsense with coronavirus making a significant impact to your operations?
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2020
  2. jmz

    jmz Medium Load Member

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    It’s slow, but nowhere near as dire as your examples. The few city guys I know are doing fine on hours, just not much OT. Linehaul is very rarely adding runs, but also rarely cancelling any. And there’s always plenty of freight going over to the hub, so the extra board can always run a set over there and work the dock for a few hours instead of sitting at home.

    As far as the virus scare, there isn’t really much that can impact us right now. American companies are operating as normal, and it hasn’t really been long enough to tell if things slowing down in China will affect us yet.
     
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  3. MACK E-6

    MACK E-6 Moderator Staff Member

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    You guys are struggling, and we have more work than we can handle. Go figure... :biggrin_2552:
     
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  4. Bob Dobalina

    Bob Dobalina Road Train Member

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    Not yet, but I wouldn't call it nonsense. When I saw photos 2 weeks ago of empty ports in China and large cities there looking like ghost towns, I figured the market would tank and I decided to temporarily move my entire 401k portfolio from mostly stocks into bonds. Since then the market has dropped 13%.

    Supply chains are already screwed up because of how many manufacturers depend on Chinese parts somewhere along the line. Those empty ports are a ticking time bomb. Think of the places LTL companies pick up where all of their freight comes to them on overseas containers.

    Check out world news from sources like Reuters and BBC. Look at what is happening in places beyond China, like South Korea, Japan, Italy, France, and Switzerland. Things are shutting down around the world, and the same could happen here. Even if we get lucky and contain it in the U.S., the impact will go beyond the stock market. Interconnected global supply chains will also affect things in the real world (freight). Maybe we can make up for it by hauling more bleach or something!

    Hopefully it is only temporary, but I definitely wouldn't dismiss concerns over the possible economic impact of this virus. Things could get real.
     
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  5. clausland

    clausland Road Train Member

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    Smart move, I did the same thing back in 2008, moved everything to G.S., when the market first started to tank. The return wasn't much, but sheltered it well until a later time.

    Maybe with this fiasco, we'll start re-instating our own supply chains here, maybe resulting in descent paying manufacturing jobs once again, imagine that...
     
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  6. McUzi

    McUzi Heavy Load Member

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    Agreed. My calling it “nonsense” really only extends to the mishandling of the issue by global government entities. This bug is going to cause more economic havoc I think.
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2020
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  7. jmz

    jmz Medium Load Member

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    Exactly the way I look at it. It’s not like when we order something from China, we get next day air delivery. It’s gonna sit on a cargo ship for at least a few weeks. So this month is when things will probably really start to slow down. I’m anxious to see how this impacts our April bid.
     
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  8. Russian Rabbit

    Russian Rabbit Road Train Member

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    Seems hot and heavy (see my diary post soon) and we have lots of contractors rolling at grumpyburg (a large hub in my region).
     
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  9. Bob Dobalina

    Bob Dobalina Road Train Member

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    To answer the original question, my terminal is doing well (for city drivers) because our city has been growing like crazy, but we've been told that business has been flat system-wide for quite some time. We have a couple of unfilled linehaul bids at my terminal because it turns out we didn't need to hire the extra road drivers they originally thought we'd need. I wonder if the stimulus provided by the corporate tax cuts a couple years ago has just levelled off? The boom can't go on forever.

    I know an older guy from another terminal who is near retirement and doesn't need much money. He has been taking CC days (unpaid days off awarded voluntarily by seniority) since the beginning of the year and has only worked about half of the work days so far. This is unusually slow, even for the winter time.
     
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  10. jmz

    jmz Medium Load Member

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    Yeah that's another thing, lots of contractors bringing freight in and out of the hub I run to. Including an infuriating number of FedEx Ground guys pulling Freight sets, which invalidates the usual argument from management that contractors are only used for freight imbalances. We aren't sending out a bunch of our own equipment on a one-way trip.

    It's hard to justify getting mad over something that doesn't directly affect me, but we have more than enough drivers available to take that freight wherever it needs to go. I bet a lot of FxF drivers would take the option to run wild all week if that was offered as an alternative to sitting home or working the dock and letting contractors take the work.
     
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