Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) has just released the 2nd Quarter 2010: TIA 3PL Market Report and the results show that, in general, TIA members outperformed the economy. The report, comprised of data drawn from five categories of members based on revenue, showed a growth in total dollars billed in the second quarter of 2010, a very encouraging sign from the marketplace.
A particularly noteworthy finding is that total dollars billed by all study participants for all activities were up significantly in the second quarter of 2010, posting over a 13-percent increase from the first quarter of 2010. When measured by the number of shipments, results show an approximate 8-percent increase in the second quarter of 2010 for all study participants. The TIA 3PL Market Report participants have reported growth in number of shipments every quarter since the report's inception in April 2009.
"Not only are we are very excited about the release of this report, we note with great satisfaction that our members chose not listen the purveyors of gloom and doom but take positive action to outperform the economy as a whole," said TIA President & CEO Robert Voltmann. "Starting in February 2009, TIA members signed a written pledge to 'boycott the recession' and continue to grow and expand. In each of the past six quarters, the TIA 3PL Market Report indicates that TIA members of all sizes have continued to grow in both revenue and shipment volume. Based on the comments in the Report, I am confident that our members will continue in this positive vein," Voltmann added.
An examination of average profit margins for the second quarter of 2010 provides some disappointing results and reveals the only down side in this report. There is a continued downward trend in margins due to the vagaries of the spot market pricing versus long-term shipper agreements. Part of this may be due to equipment shortages. While revenue and volume trended upward in the second quarter, average profit margins remained under attack and trended lower during the most recent quarter. As equipment shortages move from spot occurrences to systemic occurrences, an upward force will be applied to shipper pricing and margins will improve.
When comparing member company expectations about the third quarter of 2010 to previous expectations about the second quarter of 2010, over half (55 percent) of all respondents' predictions about the future continue to be fairly optimistic and they expect business from core customers to increase in the near future. This is tempered by the comments of the respondents which show they expecting to see an overall tightening of equipment availability in the third quarter of 2010.
The publication is based on a monthly survey of TIA members who submit real operating data, and answer questions on business conditions affecting the 3PL industry. TIA's efforts are providing a truly comprehensive report on the trends and practices of the 3PL industry.
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