US Diesel Prices Fall Below $4 Per Gallon

Journal of Commerce

US diesel prices fell below $4 per gallon during the week of April 1, according to the US Energy Information Administration.  Diesel prices have dropped 4% or 17 cents over the past five weeks.

47,000 Owe Jobs to TDL (Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics) Industry in South Carolina

Source: Columbia Regional Business Report

According to statistics compiled and released by the state Department of Commerce, the transportation, distribution, and logistics industry directly contributes to 47,000 direct jobs in South Carolina (representing $1.6 billion a year in wages).

Some key takeaways from the 3rd Annual TDL Summit:

  • In 2012, 15 projects were announced involving TDL companies, representing 2,200 jobs and a $370 million investment
  • $3.5 billion in total sales generated by TDL’s 2,600 firms
  • South Carolina is slated to be the nation’s #1 tire producer in 2015 with the construction of Continental’s new tire plant in Sumter and the expansion of Bridgestone and Michelin’s operations

 

Click here for the full report!

Four Major Trends in Transportation Management to Keep Close Tabs On

SupplyChainBrain

Here at Trendset, we are always on the lookout for information that could be helpful in keeping our clients and readers up to date on trends in the industry.  While reading through the news this morning, we cam across an article on supplychainbrain.com.  “Four Major Trends in Transportation Management to Keep Close Tabs On.”

CONTINUITY PLANNING

It’s imperative today that shippers be flexible in their transportation continuity planning.  Storms such as Sandy are not only tragic, but disruptive.  In the case of a situation like Sandy, companies often find themselves relying on talented people to help out and wishing they had a formalized continuity plan. Mario Hegewald and Jim Osborne (Senior Managers in Ernst & Young LLP’s Supply Chain Advisory Practice) share their thoughts on some steps to take to achieve good continuity planning. 

1. Develop a well-articulated, realistic plan with your carriers.  

2. Be proactive, move stock inland or increase safety stock ahead of time. 

3. Understand your organization’s private fleet capacity and ability to redeploy in most vital lanes.

 

FUEL EFFICIENCY

How does your company handle rising fuel costs?

1. Look into alternate fuel programs and join the EPA’s SmarWay program

2. Measure the total cost of ownership of alternate fuel vehicles

3. Keep an eye on diesel prices, you might be able to hedge off some spikes through trend analysis

4. Take advantage of multiple route optimization tools available on the market today

 

DRIVER SHORTAGES

The trucking industry is projecting a shortage of nearly 40,000 drivers to meet demand. Shippers need to be aware that a lake of drivers means they will have to be efficient in their movements.  Carrier/shipper collaboration will become a big necessity. 

 

TRANSPORTATION CATEGORY MANAGEMENT

Did you know that more than 75% of companies still procure their services through a spot market.  Thus leading to increased costs and decreased service quality.  The ability to collaborate with carriers and form strategic partnerships will help your company save money.  

 

 

81% of Surveyed Ocean Shippers Look to Cut Costs Through E-Invoicing this Year

A recent study of global high-volume shippers and freight forwarders found that 81% of respondents want to receive invoices electronically in 2013.

The study, released by INTTRA, found that:

  • 77% rate “managing disputes” their greatest invoicing challenging, with reducing the “time and cost to process invoices” as a close second at 68%
  • The top 10 country e-invoices launch preferences include the United Kingdom, China, the Netherlands, United States, Germany, Singapore, Australia, France, Hong Kong, and Italy

 

Currently a majority of the invoice processing is completed manually, resulting in wasteful costs for carriers and shippers on a daily basis.  It has been found that the average cost of processing a paper invoice in Europe was approximately 30 Euro (or $48).  With the introduction of e-invoicing, the cost savings could be anywhere from 50-80%, meaning a potential savings of $55-$88 for every bill of lading.

Click here for the entire article. 

Source: INTTRA

UPS drops bid for TNT (Europe)

(Reuters) UPS is dropping its $7 billion bid for Dutch delivery firm TNT Express after European anti-trust regulators said they would veto it, leaving TNT’s future in doubt and almost halving the value of its shares. 

UPS wanted to buy the smaller firm it’s European network and assets in fast-growing Asia and Latin America.  While the collapse of negotiations is a blow to UPS, the impact is far greater for TNT who is struggling to regain market share eroded during the talks.

Click here for more information.