FTR's Trucking Conditions Index shows improvement in October

Updated Dec 20, 2023
A chart showing a negative business environment for trucking.

FTR's Trucking Conditions Index (TCI) showed some slight improvement in October on the back of a drop in diesel prices. 

The index was -6.07 for October, up from -8.97 in September. FTR says despite the improvement, it's still a tough market out there for trucking companies. 

"The decline in diesel prices represented the only positive contribution to October's TCI, although rates and cost of capital were less negative factors than they had been in September," FTR's Vice President of Trucking Avery Vice says. "The combination of stagnant freight volume and surprisingly resilient capacity is thwarting a near-term turnaround for the truckload sector. Our analysis suggests that market conditions for carriers will not start to recover until the second half of 2024 absent an acceleration in the current rate of capacity loss." 

The TCI tracks changes in freight volumes, freight rates, fleet capacity, fuel prices and financing costs. These individual metrics are combined into a single index indicating the industry's overall health. A positive score represents good, optimistic conditions. A negative score, like September's and October's, represents bad, pessimistic conditions. Readings near zero are consistent with a neutral operating environment. Double-digit readings in either direction suggest significant operating changes are likely. 

Learn how to move your used trucks faster
With unsold used inventory depreciating at a rate of more than 2% monthly, efficient inventory turnover is a must for dealers. Download this eBook to access proven strategies for selling used trucks faster.
Used Truck Guide Cover