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Transportation Market Update

Schneider publishes this regular transportation market update to keep you informed of freight market conditions, supply and demand influencers, and disruptions that may impact your supply chain. 

This report is developed by leveraging data and analytics from multiple transportation industry resources.

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June 11, 2021 - Transportation Market Report

Peak shipping season is nearing, Outbound Tender Volume is 45.9% higher than 2020

Consistent with the past few years, Outbound Tender Volumes dipped during the Memorial Day holiday and then quickly rebounded afterward. Compared to the Outbound Tender Volume Index levels during this time in the previous two years, current OTVI is 45.92% higher than 2020 and 57.25% higher than 2019.

As the market continues to evolve, we are here to help. Contact a logistics expert today and read the full June 11, 2021 transportation market update report here:

In the news: Modest springtime inventory to sales ratio bump was short-lived

Not likely to bring inventory relief

The U.S. Inventory to Sales Ratio is at the lowest levels ever recorded, and the trans-Pacific shipping system has bounced against its max-capacity ceiling.​ 

At the current rate of sales, Jason Miller, associate professor of supply chain management at Michigan State University’s Eli Broad College of Business, suggests $65 billion in inventory will need to be added ahead of the 2021 holiday season to reach the inventories-to-sales ratio held in 2019.​

Now on-demand: Transportation Market Update and Outlook webcast

Stay informed with this and other free, on-demand webcasts and events.


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What does the need to refill inventories mean with peak shipping season approaching?

It is quite interesting that we are nearing the traditional peak season timeframe when essentially, we never closed out the previous peak season. With capacity continuing to tighten, we need to work together even more to increase network velocity.​

Schneider is making significant investments in assets and drivers. As we enter what could be one of the most challenging peak seasons we’ve seen, we need your help to keep equipment and drivers moving --- as the total hours to unload has increased over 30% year over year. Shippers can help to increase fluidity in the supply chain by:

  • Unloading dropped equipment as soon as possible upon arrival, ideally within 24 hours, before equipment detention accessorial charges kick in.​
  • Having equipment available for drivers to leave with, as a charge will apply for all bobtails priced as drop-and-hook.​ 
  • Metering deliveries to better manage inbound volume at your sites (which also helps with rail yard volumes for intermodal shippers, as rail providers crackdown on-ramp storage).​

In the news: Biden's infrastructure plan endangered by dire shortages

A similar theme throughout this update, Transport Topics says that the biggest threat to President Joe Biden’s vision of energizing the U.S. economy with the largest infrastructure program in decades may not be its challenging path through Congress, but a dire shortage of everything from workers to cement mills — stemming from the unprecedented difficulties of a sudden reopening of the economy after last year’s shutdowns.​

Purposeful in our approach: New Corporate Responsibility Report

At Schneider, we’re committed to doing the right thing, the right way. We’re focused on our pursuit of a more sustainable, equitable, and inclusive future, with a values-based approach to environmental, socially responsible, and governance (ESG) initiatives. 

Learn more about Schneider's progress and the next steps in our ESG journey by exploring our 2020 Corporate Responsibility Report. 

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Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration National Emergency Declaration

The Emergency Declaration was issued following the declaration of a national emergency by the President in response to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Regulatory relief is provided for commercial motor vehicle operations providing direct assistance in support of emergency relief efforts related to COVID-19. 

The Emergency Declaration has been extended multiple times. The February update shall remain in effect until August 31, 2021, or until the revocation of the Presidentially declared COVID-19 national emergency, whichever is sooner. 

The Emergency Declaration is limited to transportation of: 

  1. Livestock and livestock feed. 
  2. Medical supplies and equipment related to the testing, diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19. 
  3. Vaccines, constituent products, and medical supplies and equipment including ancillary supplies/kits for the administration of vaccines, related to the prevention of COVID-19. 
  4. Supplies and equipment necessary for community safety, sanitation, and prevention of community transmission of COVID-19 such as masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, soap and disinfectants. 
  5. Food, paper products and other groceries for emergency restocking of distribution centers or stores. 

Direct assistance does not include routine commercial deliveries, including mixed loads with a nominal quantity of qualifying emergency relief added to obtain the benefits of this emergency declaration. 

See the full Emergency Declaration, Restrictions, and Limitations on the FMCSA website. 

Schneider is committed to following the FMCSA Emergency Declaration while maintaining our #1 Core Value of safety among our drivers and associates.

COVID-19 – Actions to maintain safety among drivers and customers

We continue to closely monitor information related to the COVID-19 outbreak and – as always – our priority is to protect the health and safety of our associates, our drivers, our customers, and the general public. Our crisis management team is continually monitoring the situation and is taking steps to ensure the wellness and safety of our associates.

Recognizing that our drivers are the backbone of our business, we are in regular communication through our driver support teams to ensure that they are well informed as to the environment they are operating in. Their safety and wellness are a top priority.

Your business is very important to us and we are happy to answer more questions related to specific worksites or regions should you have them.

For the latest information on COVID-19, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website.

Our associates and transportation experts are available to help with supply chain strategy and shipping needs to respond to the pandemic. You can count on Schneider to provide your business with the same exceptional service and timely support we’ve provided shippers for 85+ years.

Published May 2021

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