FTR’s Shippers Conditions Index falls to a new record low reading

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The most recent edition of the Shippers Conditions Index (SCI) issued earlier this week by freight transportation consultancy FTR highlighted a significant decline in February, the most recent month for which data is available.

FTR describes the SCI as an indicator that sums up all market influences that affect the transport environment for shippers, with a reading above zero being favorable and a reading below being unfavorable and a “less-than-ideal environment for shippers.”

The February SCI came in at -17.9, down from January’s -10.1, topping March 2021 as the “toughest month to date for shippers,” noted FTR. But that comes with the caveat that February’s record is not likely to be lasting, with March expected to record an even lower reading, it said, stating that some rate relief will not nearly offset a surge in diesel prices.

Looking to the rest of the year, FTR said it expects the SCI to moderate into a low single digit negative range.

“Uncertainty abounds going forward as the war in Ukraine rages, supply chains remain disrupted in China and elsewhere, and fuel prices are likely to remain high,” said Todd Tranausky, FTR vice president of rail and intermodal, in a statement. “This will put significant downward pressure on the index in March and many of those pressures add downward risk to the index through the balance of the year. There is the potential that a slowing economy improves conditions later in the year, but it is far too early to predict that with any certainty.” 

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Article Topics

FTR &middot

SCI &middot

Shippers Conditions Index &middot
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