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Freight Forwarding Weekly: NY Fed says supply chains returned to normal

💅New York FED: Supply chains are back to normal

Federal Reserve Bank of New York announced earlier this week that global supply chains have returned to normal. That is three years after Covid-19 was declared a pandemic. February’s reading of the NY reserve bank’s Global Supply Chain Pressure Index was -0.26, a movement of reaching negative territory for the first time since August 2019 too. New York Fed said that this is revised from 0.94 in January. The negative turn also indicates pressures are now below the index’s historic norm of 1998. They add this “suggest[s] that global supply chain conditions have returned to normal after experiencing temporary setbacks around the turn of the year.”

Read more at Reuters // More reporting at PYMNTS

💪FMCSA head: Let us improve the trucking workplace

The head of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration addressed a keynote luncheon at the Truckload Carriers Association’s annual edition of the Truckload 2023 Orlando event, saying that the administration is dedicated to investing in people and their work to create a better place for truck drivers. Robin Hutcheson, FMCSA’s administrator, said that “truck drivers dying in the workplace isn’t acceptable…FMCSA is doing things to invest in people.” Hutcheson expressed the Biden administration’s dedication to supporting the many elements of the trucking industry.

In other FMCSA news at the same event… Hutcheson has moved to close a loophole in the Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse “The Clearinghouse will very soon start notifying employers if there is a change to a driver’s clearinghouse record for up to 12 months following the query,” Hutcheson said in her speech. She also discussed the Women of Trucking Advisory Board.

Transport Topics report // Commercial Carrier Journal report

✈️IATA says cargo demand dropped by nearly 15 percent

International Air Transport Association released January 2023 data for global air cargo markets showing that the cargo demand and volumes declined drastically. IATA says that global demand in cargo tonne-kilometers (CTK) fell by 14.9 percent compared to January 2022. The demand for international ops fell by 16.2 percent. IATA went on to blame “economic headwinds.” Global goods trade also decreased by 3 percent in December 2022, adding that this was the second monthly decline in a row for the end of the previous calendar year. IATA’s Director General Willie Walsh said the new year began with “challenging business conditions.” The illegal war in Ukraine, inflation, and labor shortages are accompanied by several additional uncertainties.

IATA press release

💩NTSB and FRA to investigate Norfolk Southern

National Transportation Safety Board announced that it would probe Norfolk Southern’s “safety culture” after the Class I rail carrier experienced controversial derailment incidents. Of course, we refer to the East Palestine, Ohio, incident that forced the local population to evacuate due to potential exposure to hazardous materials. The Federal Railroad Administration announced it would investigate Norfolk’s safety practices to conduct a “supplemental safety assessment.”

Freight Waves report

⚠️Other stories we’re reading…⚠️

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The current edition of our newsletter was written by Michael M., Freight Forwarding Weekly’s chief news analyst. Do you have a tip or do you want us to cover something? Tell us by replying. 

📈 BY THE NUMBERS: Important numbers impacting freight and logistics

⛽ Diesel: $4.282 / gal  (⬇️ from $4.294 last week) – Source: EIA

✈️ Air Cargo Index (Jan ‘23): 190 (⬆️ from 194.7 in Dec ‘22) – Source: FRED

🚢 Global Container Index: $1,790 (⬇️ from $1,984 last week) – Source: Freightos