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Diesel prices continue to climb nationwide



The average price for a gallon of diesel nationwide rose 2½ cents for the week ending April 15, to stand at $3.118 per gallon, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). The average price for diesel is now the highest it’s been since the week before Christmas.

The price increase was felt in every region of the country, although not evenly, as prices in the western third of the nation jumped considerably more than in the rest of the country.

The West Coast was hit the hardest, seeing diesel prices rise 6 cents, to end the week at $3.651 per gallon. California, which usually is responsible for the heft of price increases on the West Coast, actually had less of an increase, $0.057 per gallon, than the remainder of the West Coast, where the price jumped a nation-leading $0.063. California continues to edge closer to the $4 per gallon plateau. With this week’s increase, the average price for a gallon of diesel in the Golden State is $3.967 per gallon.

The Rocky Mountain region wasn’t far behind the West Coast, seeing a price increase of $0.054 per gallon, to $3.082.

Heading east, the price jumps are decidedly smaller, the largest being the Gulf Coast, where diesel rose 2 cents, to finish at $2.899. The Gulf Coast continues to hold its claim to the lowest diesel prices in the nation. It is now the only region in the country where diesel remains below $3 per gallon.

The Midwest and Lower Atlantic regions crept back over $3 per gallon during the past week. In both regions, diesel prices rose 1.7 cents, to finish at $3.010 in the Midwest and $3.015 in the Lower Atlantic.

Elsewhere on the East Coast, diesel rose $0.018 in the Central Atlantic, to $3.342, while New England saw the smallest increase of the week, $0.012, to finish at $3.205. The average price of diesel across the entire East Coast is now $3.153.

Despite this week’s increase, the year-to-year price comparison actually improved across the board, as diesel prices spiked 6.1 cents a year ago at this time.

After seesawing for a couple of days, crude oil prices started Tuesday on an upswing. Brent crude, the international benchmark for oil, was up 8 cents by 9 a.m. Eastern Time,  to $71.26 a barrel, while U.S. crude gained 25 cents, to stand at $63.65.

Click here for a complete list of average prices by region for the past three weeks.

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Barr-Nunn creates new solo fleets, increased pay



Barr-Nunn Transportation also offers an over-the road North fleet for those drivers living in West Virginia, Detroit, along with parts of Indiana, Wisconsin, and Iowa. (Courtesy: BARR-NUNN TRANSPORTATION)

GRANGER, Iowa — Barr-Nunn Transportation has created new solo fleets and increased pay.

For drivers living in the northeastern United States, Ohio and some of Indiana and Kentucky there are now two options for home time.

Drivers can be home every weekend for two days and earn a maximum starting pay of 60 cents per practical mile or drivers can be home every other weekend for three days and earn a maximum starting pay of 61 cents per practical mile.

Barr-Nunn Transportation also offers an over-the road North fleet for those drivers living in West Virginia, Detroit, along with parts of Indiana, Wisconsin, and Iowa.  These drivers are home every 18 days for four full days and can earn a top starting rate of 62 cents per practical mile to start.

In addition to these starting rates all company drivers receive CSA safety bonuses of $725 or $550 every 90 days plus PTO (vacation) along with the money.  Over-the-road company drivers can earn over two weeks of PTO (vacation) in their first year with Barr-Nunn and they start receiving this PTO after 30 days.

Blue Cross Blue Shield Insurance, 401(k) matching program, extra pay per mile on shorter hauls and paid life insurance are added benefits at Barr-Nunn.

For more information about Barr-Nunn Transportation visit their website at or call 888-999-7576.

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FTR’s Shippers Conditions Index took step back in April



The Shippers Conditions Index tracks the changes representing four major conditions in the U.S. full-load freight market including freight demand, freight rates, fleet capacity, and fuel price. (The Trucker file photo)

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — FTR’s April Shippers Conditions Index (SCI) took a step back in April to a reading of 1.9, close to a full point below March.

The April SCI measure was negatively affected by stronger rail rates and higher fuel prices outweighing improved shipper conditions related to trucking.

The outlook shows strong shipper conditions through 2019 as the rate environment is expected to become more favorable.  Key factors to watch include fuel prices, truck utilization, and rail service.

“Shippers should continue to expect favorable conditions and an ability to easily get freight placed in the market,” said Todd Tranausky, vice president of rail and intermodal at FTR. “They will be aided by the relatively stable fuel prices through most of the rest of 2019 and somewhat slowing rail freight volumes.”

The Shippers Conditions Index tracks the changes representing four major conditions in the U.S. full-load freight market. These conditions are: freight demand, freight rates, fleet capacity, and fuel price. The individual metrics are combined into a single index that tracks the market conditions that influence the shippers’ freight transport environment. A positive score represents good, optimistic conditions. A negative score represents bad, pessimistic conditions. The index tells you the industry’s health at a glance. In life, running a fever is an indication of a health problem. It may not tell you exactly what’s wrong, but it alerts you to look deeper. Similarly, a reading well below zero on the FTR Trucking Conditions Index warns you of a problem…and readings high above zero spell opportunity. Readings near zero are consistent with a neutral operating environment. Double digit readings (both up or down) are warning signs for significant operating changes.

For more information about the work of FTR, visit, follow us on Twitter @ftrintel, or call (888) 988-1699, ext. 1.



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ACT Research Trucking Index shows nearly across-the-board declines



This chart shows the history of the Volume Index which dropped further into negative territory hitting 46.7 (SA), from 49.5 in April. (Courtesy: ACT RESEARCH)

COLUMBUS, Ind. — The latest release of ACT’s For-Hire Trucking Index showed nearly across-the-board declines, with capacity being the lone exception.

The Pricing Index fell considerably to 38.8, in May on a seasonally adjusted (SA) basis, the lowest in survey history, from 45.4 in April.

The Volume Index dropped further into negative territory hitting 46.7 (SA), from 49.5 in April. Fleet productivity/utilization slipped to 46.0 in May on a seasonally adjusted basis down from 49.4 in April, and capacity growth increased to 54.6, from April’s 54.3 reading.

“May’s Pricing Index was the fourth consecutive negative number after 30 straight months of expansion. This confirms our expectation that the annual bid season is not going well for truckers,” said Tim Denoyer, ACT Research’s vice president and senior analyst. “We continue to believe rates are under pressure from weak freight volumes and strong capacity growth.”

Volume in May fell for the sixth time in the past seven months, Denover said.

“The softness coincides with several other recent freight metrics, with the drop likely due in part to rapid growth of private fleets and the slowdown in the industrial sector of the economy,” he said. “The supply-demand balance reading loosened to 42.1, from 45.3 in April. The past seven consecutive readings have shown a deterioration in the supply-demand balance, with May the largest yet.”

The ACT Freight Forecast provides quarterly forecasts for the direction of volumes and contract rates through 2020 and annual forecasts through 2021 for the truckload, less-than-truckload and intermodal segments of the transportation industry.

For the truckload spot market, the report provides forecasts for the next 12 months.

ACT is a publisher of new and used commercial vehicle (CV) industry data, market analysis and forecasting services for the North American market, as well as the U.S. tractor-trailer market and the China CV market. ACT’s CV services are used by all major North American truck and trailer manufacturers and their suppliers, major trucking and logistics firms, as well as the banking and investment community in North America, Europe, and China.



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