This country’s most recent logistics numbers (from the Logistics Market Snapshot, courtesy of the Georgia Center of Innovation) show rising demand for truck drivers while consumer confidence reached the highest level in five years.

·       In the first quarter of 2013, the turnover rate at large truckload carriers rose to an annualized rate of97% from 90% in the previous quarter.  At smaller truckload fleets, the rate rose to 82% from 76% in the previous quarter. (Source: American Trucking Association)

·       U.S. containerized exports totaled 1.07 million TEUs in March, the highest monthly volume since March 2012. March containerized exports were 6% higher than the previous month. (Source: PIERS)

·       Net absorption in the U.S. during Q1 2013 totaled +47.4 million square feet. (Source: Colliers International)

·       The Consumer Confidence Index increased to 81.4 in June 2013, its highest level since January 2008.   (Source: The Conference Board)

·       In May, housing starts rose 6.8% over the previous month.  Year-over-year, housing starts and building permits in May have increased 28.6% and 20.8%, respectively. (Source: U.S. DOC) 

Here are the other market highlights:

Transportation Indexes:

• Dow Jones Transportation index rose 1% during the month of June. (Stock performance of twenty large, well-known U.S. companies in the transportation industry, average of June 10th thru July 10th).

• NASDAQ Transportation Index increased 2.9% in June. (Averaged share weights of NASDAQ-listed companies classified as transportation companies, average of June 10th thru July 10th).

• The USDOT's freight transportation services index rose 1.2% in May 2013. The index’s reading of 114.3 was up 2.7% from May 2012. (Source: US DOT).

• The June shipments index rose 0.1% over the previous month and fell 1.5% year-over-year. The June expenditures index rose 3.4% for the month, and increased 0.8% year-over-year. (Source: Cass Information Systems | Cassinfo.com) (Based upon transportation dollars and shipments of Cass clients comprised of over 400 shipping companies).

Imports and Exports:

• Import shipment volume, in TEUs, at U.S. ports increased 3% in May from the previous month and fell 2.2% year-over-year. U.S. vessel imports in May increased for the second consecutive month and are the highest since last August. The number of bills of lading, or total shipments, filed with U.S. Customs totaled 786 thousand in May, up 2.5% from April. (Source: Zepol Corporation | zepol.com).

• Import volume through major U.S. container ports is expected to increase 1.1% in July. In May, the latest month for which numbers are available, U.S. container ports handled 1.38 million TEUs, a 0.6% increase over the same month last year. Total U.S. containerized imports are expected to increase 1.2% during the first half of 2013. (Source: NRF/Hackett Associates).

• U.S. containerized exports totaled more than 1.07 million TEUs in March, the highest monthly volume since March 2012. March containerized exports were 6% higher than the previous month. (Source: PIERS).