ACT Research: February’s Tractor Dashboard Extended Steep-Pitched Decline of January

ACT Research Co.
3 min readApr 25, 2022

According to ACT Research’s recently released Transportation Digest, the top line on ACT’s Tractor Dashboard in February extended the steep-pitched decline of January, taking the dashboard top line tally from double-digits in January to zero.

Transportation Digest

The report, which combines proprietary ACT data and analysis from a wide variety of sources, paints a comprehensive picture of trends impacting transportation and commercial vehicle markets. This monthly report is designed as a quick look at transportation insights for use by fleet and trucking executives, reviewing top-level considerations such as for-hire indices, freight, heavy and medium duty segments, the US trailer market, used truck sales information, and an overview of the US macro economy.

“Not even in the days of the COVID shock, from January to March 2020, when the top line index went from negative 5 to negative 10, has the index fallen so far so fast. And, it is important to note that the buildup in Russian forces on the Ukraine border had just started in January, so the threat of a conflict had little or no influence on that month’s result,” said Kenny Vieth, ACT’s President and Senior Analyst. He continued, “Most of the softness has occurred in the metrics for the overall business environment — slowing in consumer goods spending (weak sales results for light vehicles), residential construction (inflation), and truck stock prices (impacted by higher global risk and Fed tightening).” Vieth further noted, “In February, freight indicators joined the softening parade, with fraying around the edges as metrics like the Cass Freight Index saw growth decelerate.”

When asked about the take-away, Vieth explained, “Despite record carrier profitability and pent-up demand for all commercial vehicles, the corrosive effects of accelerating inflation and the Fed’s response increase downside risks to demand for the goods hauled by those vehicles.”

ACT Research Tractor Dashboard

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

ACT’s 67th Seminar is scheduled for August 23–25, 2022. The focus will be the potential impact of decarbonization and autonomous technology on commercial vehicles and on-highway transportation. Each event ACT shares its best-in-class data and forecast in presentations, as well as featuring guest speakers to dive into topics of interest for the benefit of attendees. The agenda includes key industry leaders, who will be announced at a later date. For more information about Seminar 67 Watts Under The Hood: Transportation Transformation, click here:

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

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

Click here for information about ACT’s Transportation Digest.

For more information about additional ACT’s Transportation Publications and Services, click here.



ACT Research Co.

ACT Research is the leader in commercial vehicle industry data, market analysis, and forecasting services for North America.