The transport barometer: Freight increase above average in the third quarter

The TimoCom transport barometer shows that freight continued to exceed available loading capacity in the past third quarter. The result was an average freight to vehicle ratio of 71:29. On the whole, the amount of freight during the summer months July, August and September increased. But, what is the explanation for this phenomenon in the European transport market?

After the second quarter concluded with the highest freight share, the trend continued during the third quarter of 2017 with a lot of freight at TimoCom, Europe’s largest transport platform provider. According to the German Federal Statistics Office, Germany alone exported in July eight percent more compared to the same period in the previous year. Both indicators point to an increasingly stronger and growing economy, from which road goods transport business benefits. As a consequence, more and more loading capacity is required, which is scarce at the moment.

Summer brings more freight

When comparing July with June, July showed a minimal downward trend going from a freight share of 76 percent to 71 percent. Nonetheless, the volume of freight still outpaced significantly the optimal 50:50 freight to vehicle space ratio. Compared to the previous years, this year’s freight share was substantially higher (2015: 51% and 2016: 54%). The lovely summer months often bring with them an increase in demand. Furthermore, due to the economic situation, a large number of companies in Europe were searching for suitable loading space.

August recorded a freight to vehicle space ratio of 65:35. Freight fell by 6 percentage points compared to the past month, but the freight volume remained significantly higher than the available loading space. The freight share was, however, clearly higher when compared to the previous years (205: 45% and 2016: 51%). According to the economic indicator of the German Institute of Economic Affairs, the index was clearly above the 100-point mark with 106 points in August. The economic indicator suggests a solid growth of the German economy and an even higher level than in the second quarter.

Just like May, September surprised everyone with a new freight high-peak of 78 percent and gave the starting signal for a golden autumn. As a result, the freight share was considerably higher than in the previous years (2015: 52% and 2016: 61%).

TimoCom’s Company Spokesman Gunnar Gburek explains the possible reasons:

– The economic figures in many places in Europe are optimistic. It was the holiday period, people travelled a lot and consumed more. This stimulated the transport sector, but at the same time increased the confrontation with the already prevailing driver deficit.

Abundant freight till the end of the year

Gburek has a positive feeling about the last quarter of the year, but has also recognised a development on the transport market, which is to be taken seriously:

An increase in freight is an advantage for transport service providers. The have more scope to achieve better prices. The tendency is towards a solid economic growth, however, the generated workload must be effectively addressed, if not the tempo will be slowed.

In any case, TimoCom assumes that there will always be an imbalance between freight and available loading space.

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