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September 18, 2013
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Top Stories In This Issue
Truck Dealers Convene for Legislative Conference in Washington

Nearly 400 new-car and truck dealers, including 11 ATD board members, from across the country are in nation's capital this week for NADA's annual Washington Conference and fly-in. The conference includes briefings from NADA, lawmakers and government officials. Commercial truck dealers will also meet with their members of Congress to discuss issues affecting their businesses. Meetings are also scheduled with EPA and NHTSA.
Source: ATD-NADA Public Affairs

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Lawmakers, Industry Press for No FET Hikes on Trucks

Legislation has been introduced in the U.S. House to discourage any increase in the 12% Federal Excise Tax on the purchase of heavy-duty trucks and trailers. The bipartisan measure from Reps. Reid Ribble, R-Wis., and Tim Walz, D-Minn., comes as there has been talk on Capitol Hill about increasing the tax while Congress is looking at new ways to raise additional money for the Highway Trust Fund, which is used to pay for federal road building projects. The resolution notes truck prices have increased dramatically in recent years due to various federal mandates and that future ones will increase prices even more, further increasing the FET on each vehicle. It claims any increase in the FET would add “uncertainity and volatility to the Highway Trust Fund.” Several trucking groups have issued statements supporting the resolution, including the American Truck Dealers. “The existing 12% levy on heavy duty trucks is already the highest excise tax imposed by Congress on a percentage basis,” said Dick Witcher, chairman of the American Truck Dealers and a Massachusetts International and Ford truck dealer.
Source: Heavy Duty Trucking

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Video: U.S. Rep. Reid Ribble Visits JX Enterprises in Hartland, Wis.

U.S. Rep. Reid Ribble (R-Wis.) recently met with ATD Vice Chairman and President and CEO of JX Enterprises, Eric Jorgensen, at his dealership in Hartland, Wis. Issues discussed during the meeting included Jorgensen's family business, dealership operations, technology and the adverse impact of the federal excise tax (FET) on heavy duty trucks. "We have a regulatory regime in this country that is prohibiting and constricting economic growth," said Rep. Ribble, who is against the FET and other burdensome regulations out of Washington. "This is unseen [the amount of new regulation] before in our nation's history and we have to fix it." The visit also included a test drive of a Peterbilt truck, a tour of the dealership and a roundtable discussion with customer Greg Klimek, president of Klemm Tank Lines, and Bill Sepic, president of the Wisconsin Auto and Truck Dealers Association. To view a video of the visit, click here.
Source: NADAFrontPage.com

Editor's note: Last week, Rep. Ribble introduced legislation with Rep. Tim Walz (D-Minn.) in the House of Representatives that puts Congress on record against increasing the federal excise tax on heavy-duty trucks. ATD members are encouraged to contact their member of Congress and ask them to support House Concurrent Resolution 52.

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August Truck Orders Up 20%

Surge raises industry's expectations for 4Q

Orders for new heavy-duty trucks climbed 20% last month from a year earlier, boosting expectations that orders will keep rising in the fall and surpass normal seasonal trends, ACT Research reported. The order total of 19,500 was the highest in three months and topped July's total by 11%, ACT said. The group's report also said orders for Classes 5-7 rose 30% year-over-year to a five-year high of 18,000 during August, which typically is a strong month for those vehicles. “Overall, it was a pretty good month,” ACT President Kenny Vieth told Transport Topics. “The important takeaway is that the summer is the weakest period of the year for orders. We do expect a transition into the fourth quarter, the beginning of the peak order season. We think orders will rise fairly substantively." Vieth noted that recent reports indicate stronger fleet profits and an expectation of improved freight volumes that could spur orders to a monthly average of 23,000 to 25,000 in the fourth quarter.
Source: Transport Topics

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Daimler to Build New Headquarters in Portland, Add 400 Jobs

Daimler Trucks North America announced Friday it would build a new corporate headquarters in Portland, bringing hundreds of jobs to the city. The company made the announcement Friday afternoon at Jeld-Wen Field. The company said the move will bring 400 jobs, with an average salary of $80,000 per year, to the Portland economy. It will also consolidate workers at two different Portland offices. The 265,000-square-foot, LEED Platinum-certified headquarters will be built on Swan Island. The building will cost $150 million and is slated for completion in 2016. The current Daimler plant on Swan Island employs 725 union workers and makes up to 30 Western Star semi-trucks per day.
Source: KGW-TV (Portland, Ore.)

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U.S. Trucks Slump Again in August

Sales of medium- and heavy-duty trucks slipped 8.4% in the U.S. in August, the sixth monthly loss for the group this year, WardsAuto data shows. Only Classes 4 and 7 posted gains over like-2012, as nearly every group's performance could be traced to minor or major losses by beleaguered Illinois-based truck maker International. Class 8 sales fell 10.6% as all but two manufacturers declined from year-ago. PACCAR's Kenworth and the Volvo Truck brand saw August sales rise 7.6% and 11.2%, respectively. Daimler's Western Star suffered the biggest drop in the heavy-duty sector, down 37.4%, just ahead of International's 30.6% decline. Medium-duty sales fell 5.7% in August due to Class 5 and 6 declines.
Source: WardsAuto

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ATD Market Update With Chris Visser
Sales Volume Remained Stable in August

The number of trucks retailed per rooftop in August matched the year-to-date average, after a major dip in June. August's average of 6.1 trucks per rooftop is slightly off July's average of 6.5, but well ahead of June's 4.7. “Year to date, dealers averaged 6.1 trucks per rooftop, so August was a typical month,” said Chris Visser, senior analyst for ATD-NADA Commercial Truck Guide. “The drop in June was an annual cyclical event that we expect to see every year.” Be sure to check NADA's Commercial Vehicle Blog every few days for updates on the used truck market, at www.nada.com/b2b.
Source: ATD-NADA Commercial Truck Guide

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Top Stories
Truck Dealers Convene for Legislative Conference in Washington
Lawmakers, Industry Press for No FET Hikes on Trucks
Video: U.S. Rep. Reid Ribble Visits JX Enterprises in Hartland, Wis.
August Truck Orders Up 20%
Daimler to Build New Headquarters in Portland, Add 400 Jobs
U.S. Trucks Slump Again in August
ATD Market Update With Chris Visser
Sales Volume Remained Stable in August

 

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