FTR’s Shippers Conditions Index (SCI) for October improved to a reading of -2.1, showing indications that the worst may well be over for shippers. They are seeing the best environment in more than a year because of stabilizing rates and moderating fuel prices. The range of SCI readings should continue this trend into 2019, possibly even entering positive territory by mid-year. Increasing capacity, rate stabilization and the continued soft fuel prices are all positive factors for shippers.
Todd Tranausky, Vice President of Rail and Intermodal at FTR, comments, “Lower fuel prices and some lessening of the capacity crunch shippers experienced earlier this year have shifted overall conditions to a neutral posture. That stance is expected to be maintained through the first half of 2019 baring an external shock to the supply chain.”