In the second quarter of 2017, the TimoCom transport barometer recorded not merely peak values but in fact the highest freight volumes since statistics began. According to the Federal Statistical Office, in May alone Germany exported 14.1 per cent more than in the same period last year. This rapid economic development was instrumental for the strong freight overhang and the reason why excessive amounts of capacity were needed throughout Europe.
- In April, the transport barometer increased from the near theoretical optimum to a freight share of more than 68 percent. On the one hand, this was due to increased consumption at Easter and during the Easter holidays. But many contracting entities in Europe were also looking for suitable cargo space due to the economic performance.
- In May, the transported freight consolidated to a freight-to-cargo space ratio of 70:30. A decisive factor for this was Germany’s strong export performance.
- June, with 71 per cent freight volumes, was the freight-richest month since the start of data acquisition for the transport barometer. At 104 points, the index was well above the 100-point mark, according to the business barometer of the German Institute for Economics. The business barometer is thus signalling strong growth by the German economy.
Freight-rich prospects for the 3rd quarter
In Germany, everyone is hoping that the economy will continue to produce and trade at this high level. But this will also require sufficient available transport services. The Federal Minister of Transport has recognized this and initiated additional infrastructure development. “That is the right way, although the many building sites will at first cause longer transport times and thus lower operating times. Furthermore, the new regulation regarding weekly rest periods is rather counterproductive: If freight carriers are no longer permitted to spend the long rest periods in the truck, foreign drivers in particular will try to get back home for the weekend and will thus only be available at the beginning of the next week with considerable delay,” explains TimoCom company spokesman Gunnar Gburek. At TimoCom one is thus assuming that a balanced relationship will not be reached in the near future and that the share of freight will again clearly exceed the free freight capacities in the next quarter.