A report from ANZ analysts sees Aussie trucking on the up with positive figures reflecting an upturn in the fortunes of the industry. The ANZ research found ‘a noteworthy’ increase in revenue and margins for the trucking businesses surveyed and this is leading to increased capital expenditure.
The ANZ team looked at 35 trucking operations. These had a combined revenue of $11 billion and are said to represent 27 per cent of the trucking industry in Australia. Their findings were also backed up by the latest truck sales figures released this week by the Truck Industry Council.
The latest truck sales results tell us 23,314 new trucks have been sold in 2018 so far and this is 3,587 up on the same figure for 2017. The figures in the heavy duty market are even more buoyant with 7908 heavy duty sales representing a 31.28 per cent increase in sales over last year’s total in the first seven months of 6039.
In its finding the survey reckons revenue growth for the top 25 per cent of businesses surveyed have experiences around six per cent growth in the last financial year, compared with two per cent the year before. The median rise in revenues tipped the balance at two per cent this year.
The increased capital expenditure is good news for Australia. However, we still lag behind the rest of the world. The rising capital expenditure last year was three per cent of sales in Australia, but that figure was seven per cent internationally.
Two indicators of performance in the last financial year illustrate a trend in the trucking industry. Margins in the general freight area have trended downwards for the past five years and even specialised freight margins are only holding their own.
Tighter margins squeeze the smaller trucking operations first and this is reflected in the declining number of trucking businesses, from 44,000 in 2008 to to 40,000 now and down to a predicted 37,000 by 2024. At the same time employment in the industry is predicted to continue to increase from 150,000 now to 160,000 by 2024.
Although this survey doesn’t give us the complete picture, the number of businesses involved should be able to show us how the overall industry is trending.