American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index decreased 1.2% in July after falling 2% in June. In July, the index equaled 109.8 (2015=100) compared with 111.1 in June. “Softness in tonnage over the last few months is due more to supply constraints, rather than a big drop in freight volumes,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “Not only are there broader supply chain issues, like semiconductors, holding tonnage back, but there are also industry specific difficulties, including the driver shortage and lack of equipment. For-hire truckload carriers are operating fewer trucks than a year earlier. It is difficult to haul significantly more freight with fewer trucks and drivers. “In addition to these supply issues, retail sales and housing starts, both large drivers of truck freight, retreated in July, although both rose on a year-over-year basis,” he said. June’s reading was revised down to -2% from our July 20 press release. Compared with July 2020, the SA index fell 2.9%, which was the first year-over-year drop since March. In June, the index was flat from a year earlier. Year-to-date, compared with the same seven months in 2020, tonnage is down 0.2%.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration reported Wednesday that crude supplies declined by 9.9 million barrels for the week ended June 22—the largest weekly decline so far this year. Analysts surveyed by S&P Global Platts had forecast a fall of 2.3 million barrels, while the American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday reported a drop of 9.2 million barrels.
“Record crude exports and record refinery runs have combined to yield the biggest draw to crude stocks so far this year,” said Matt Smith, director of commodity research at ClipperData. “Even crude production holding at a record level has been unable to offset strong domestic and international demand.” The EIA pegged last week’s total domestic crude output at 10.9 million barrels a day, unchanged from the previous week.
more at source: https://www.marketwatch.com/story/crude-rises-as-traders-fret-over-potential-supply-worries-linked-to-iran-2018-06-27