18 January - 24 January
Manifest Weekly: January 18-24, 2022
What we’re covering:
J.B. Hunt’s expectations of rising freight demand and declining volatility
Progolis being bullish on warehouse demand in 2023
South Carolina ports handling record cargo volumes in 2022
Logixboard’s latest webinar & featured content
IN THE NEWS
Freight-Demand To Regain Traction, Volatility To Reduce According To J.B. Hunt
Thanks to COVID-19, revenues across the logistics and supply chain sectors continued to grow, reflecting growing demand. But by the last quarter of 2023, thanks to inflationary pressures, demand fell exponentially. As a result, revenues too were affected, and certain businesses had to lay off personnel to deal with changing expectations. Now in 2023, trucking and logistics giant J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. expects freight demand to regain traction in the coming months as the pandemic-driven upheaval in supply chains fades and companies return to more conventional ordering cycles.
Slowing shipping demand helped push fourth-quarter profit at J.B. Hunt down 17% from the same quarter the year before, and revenue growth fell short of expectations as retailers pulled back on inventory restocking and consumer spending sagged during the traditional shopping season heading into the holidays. Operating revenues at the freight bellwether rose 4% in the last three months of 2022 over the year before to $3.65 billion, but freight-related revenues excluding fuel surcharges were off about 3% from the fourth quarter of 2021.
TOP HITS THIS WEEK
From The Manifest
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WHAT’S HAPPENING AROUND THE WORLD
Featured News Stories
Prologis, the world’s largest developer of logistics properties, is bullish about warehouse demand this year despite signs of an economic slowdown. Warehouse demand peaked last year, as average national vacancy rates plummeted to nearly 3% and reached close to 1% in Southern California.
About 1,400 misclassified drivers are to be remunerated up to $5.6 million according to the Labor Dept. by a parts authority provider and Diligent Delivery Systems, who denied workers minimum wage, overtime pay, and other benefits.
As ocean freight rates continue to fall, Maersk says it expects to see a modal shift from air to sea this quarter. In an update to customers, it said air freight volumes remained low, adding that high inflation rates across Europe are continuing to impact disposable income.
The retail holiday sales data for 2022 was a disappointment, but DHL said it is continuing to see large growth in e-commerce, and so investing heavily in North American e-commerce operations. Core consumer retail may rebound in the mid-to-late second quarter, according to DHL.
ON OUR RADAR
South Carolina Ports Hit Record Cargo Volumes in 2022
Thanks to an exponential increase in demand, ports across the US, especially the West Coast, handled large cargo volumes through 2020-21. As a result, port congestion and long delays in handling were quite common. But thanks to declining demand in 2022, port congestion finally eased to pre-COVID levels, allowing port authorities to focus on managing operations more systematically. Despite the demand slowing down though, South Carolina ports handled record cargo volumes in 2022.
South Carolina Ports joins Georgia and Virginia in posting a record for 2022, with the Port of Charleston handling the most containers ever in its history. The port complex handled nearly 2.8 million twenty-foot equivalent units in the calendar year, up 1.5% from 2021. SC Ports also moved more than 1.5 million pier containers in the year, a figure that accounts for containers of any size. That is a 1% gain year over year.
Not all metrics reflected year-over-year gains. Loaded export TEUs for the year totaled 665,459, down 18% from 814,984 in 2021, but loaded import TEUs totaled 1.38 million in 2022, up 7% from 1.29 million TEUs in the prior year. SC Ports handled 199,343 vehicles at the Columbus Street Terminal, down from 233,887 vehicles in 2021. The movement to SC Ports’ two rail-served inland ports, Inland Port Greer and Port Dillion were also lower, year on year. The ports handled a combined 167,147 rail moves in 2022, down from 189,646 in 2021.
Earlier this week, Virginia Port Authority and Georgia Ports Authority reported record 2022 volumes at their respective facilities. SC Ports said more than $2 billion has been invested in port infrastructure in recent years, with an additional $2.5 billion in spending planned over the next decade.