ACT Research: Despite Downside Risks, Still Much to Like About US Economy & CV Markets
In the release of its Commercial Vehicle Dealer Digest, ACT Research reported that despite materially higher downside risks to the outlook, there is still much to like about the US economic setup, with jobs continuing to outstrip the supply of labor, corporate profits coming off record performance in 2021, and consumers’ balance sheets remaining well positioned — if less well positioned than before the recent market correction.
The report, which combines ACT’s proprietary data analysis from a wide variety of industry sources, paints a comprehensive picture of trends impacting transportation and commercial vehicle markets. This monthly report includes a relevant but high-level forecast summary, complete with transportation insights for use by commercial vehicle dealer executives, reviewing top-level considerations such as for-hire indices, freight, heavy and medium duty segments, the total US trailer market, used truck sales information, and a review of the US macro economy.
Asked about how the economic situation impacts commercial vehicle markets, Kenny Vieth, ACT’s President and Senior Analyst, noted, “For the guys who buy commercial vehicles, the virus continued to bend consumer spending to goods and away from services in early 2022. Port backlogs and inventory restocking should support freight volumes through the first half of this year, but the longer oil prices remain elevated, the more business and consumer dollars will be diverted.” He elaborated, “In addition to significant lingering port congestion, pent-up demand in the manufacturing sector broadly remains elevated and corporate profits continue their record-setting run, allowing businesses to invest in productivity enhancing equipment.”
About effects on the transportation industry, he commented, “Used commercial vehicle prices are at record levels across Class 8 age and mileage nodes. Data indicate record valuations for medium-duty and trailer assets as well.” He concluded, “As 2022 progresses, it is becoming increasingly clear that any victory in the form of higher production and sales is going to be hard fought. Be it inflation, supply chain, or now heightened geopolitical concerns, makers and buyers of commercial vehicles will face more challenges in discharging their duties this year.”
ACT Research is recognized as the leading publisher of commercial vehicle truck, trailer, and bus industry data, market analysis and forecasts for the North America and China markets. ACT’s analytical services are used by all major North American truck and trailer manufacturers and their suppliers, as well as banking and investment companies. ACT Research is a contributor to the Blue Chip Economic Indicators and a member of the Wall Street Journal Economic Forecast Panel. ACT Research executives have received peer recognition, including election to the Board of Directors of the National Association for Business Economics, appointment as Consulting Economist to the National Private Truck Council, and the Lawrence R. Klein Award for Blue Chip Economic Indicators’ Most Accurate Economic Forecast over a four-year period. ACT Research senior staff members have earned accolades including Chicago Federal Reserve Automotive Outlook Symposium Best Overall Forecast, Wall Street Journal Top Economic Outlook, and USA Today Top 10 Economic Forecasters. More information can be found at www.actresearch.net.
ACT Research recently completed POWER UP, a look at 7 global regions and more than 20 countries in a review of local regulations, infrastructure, and the impact on the adoption of battery and fuel cell electric commercial vehicles through 2040. This forecast is the first of its kind, a review of the decarbonization of commercial vehicles around the world. POWER UP is available now at https://www.actresearch.net/power-up/.
Additionally, ACT Research published an update to CHARGING FORWARD, a North American-centric battery and fuel cell electric vehicle adoption rate forecast, covering 23 vehicle applications, in Classes 4–8 commercial vehicles, through 2040. CHARGING FORWARD is considered by many industry leaders to be the apex of analysis and economic-based total cost of ownership modeling in the industry. And, it is now available for purchase at https://www.actresearch.net/electric-vehicles-charge/.
Currently, the team at ACT Research is engaged in a commercial autonomous vehicle multi-client study. Through this work, we will identify adoption rates and forecast autonomous Classes 4–8 vehicles through 2040. If you’re working to understand the economic value proposition or the unit economics of different autonomous models, participation in this study is a must. Learn more at https://www.actresearch.net/autonomous-cv/.
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