Friday, July 11, 2014

Cargo Congestion on West Coast

From our friends at A. N. Derringer

Cargo Congestion on West Coast
of US & Canada

Cargo congestion prevails among US and Canadian West Coast ports. Shippers concerned with US West Coast labor negotiations between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) and their management have increased cargo throughput to US ports, as well as rerouted freight to Canadian ports. A chassis shortage and labor unrest among striking truckers at the ports of LA and Long Beach have also increased congestion.

The congestion has pushed freight to the Canadian ports of Vancouver and Prince Rupert causing increased dwell times for inland destined cargo and pushing rail capacity. CN Rail has advised they are giving priority to customers with cargo traffic regularly routed through Canadian ports, meeting its service obligations to year-round customers first.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

The Coming Truck Driver Drought

From Bloomberg Business Week Online
Add truck driver to the list of jobs Americans don’t want to do anymore. Long weeks on the road away from home and family and stagnant salaries are making it hard to recruit drivers. The average age of a commercial driver in the U.S. is 55, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and retirements in recent years have long-haul carriers worried about filling their spots. Many would-be younger drivers are instead drawn to construction and other jobs that pay more than the average $38,000 a year truckers make.
“There has been an underlying quality driver shortage for many years, but it’s been masked by the recession,” says Mike Hinz, president of the van division at Roehl Transport. Nationwide there are about 25,000 unfilled truck driving jobs, according to the American Trucking Associations (ATA). That’s a manageable shortfall for now, given a still-struggling economy and lower-than-expected demand. Analysts expect freight volumes, which were flat in 2013, to rise only slightly in 2014—but that could be enough to create a need for more drivers. “As exports rise,” says Hinz, “we’ll see a driver shortage that is modest today become acute.” The U.S. government projects that 330,000 new truckers will be needed by 2020.
Federal regulations have also made a career behind the wheel less attractive. New rules have reduced the hours truckers can drive and require more breaks—so long-haul drivers paid by the mile are on the road longer without extra pay. Trucking companies are reacting by stepping up recruitment, offering signing bonuses, and reimbursing driving school tuition, which can run up to $5,000.
The Federal Highway Administration says intermodal transportation will become more popular as over-the-road freight networks are less able to meet demand. The ATA calculates intermodal will grow an average of 5.1 percent a year until 2018. That makes sense, says Ryan Bouchard, an analyst with Avondale Partners: “The message of less costly and more efficient movement is resonating with clients.”

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

U. S. Commercial Service Regional Conferences


DISCOVER GLOBAL MARKETS SERIES.  The U.S. Commercial Service is proud to announce this unprecedented national series of conferences to help U.S. business compete, win, and grow in the international marketplace.  Reserve your place now at a DISCOVER GLOBAL MARKETS event in 2014.  For registration details, see: Below is a list of upcoming events in the series. 

  • Free Trade Agreement Countries, Sept. 9-10, Detroit, MI                    
  • Greater China, Oct. 7-8, New York, NY            
  • The Americas, Oct. 29-31, Charlotte, NC              
  • Sub-Saharan Africa, Nov. 5-6, Atlanta, GA                
  • Healthcare and Life Sciences, Nov. 17-18, Minneapolis, MN

Thursday, July 03, 2014

Happy 4th of July

4th Of July Holiday Notice
Dixie Cullen Interests, Inc.

Office and Warehouse will be closed on Friday, July 4th in observance of Independence Day.
We will re-open for business at 7am on Monday, July 7th.