Operating costs reach all time high

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Vehicle operating costs are at record levels, and tracking ahead of inflation, according to the Freight Transport Association’s Manager’s Guide to Distribution Costs 2011.

The report calculated that on average, vehicle operating costs for rigid, articulated and drawbar vehicles have risen by 6.2 per cent in the year to 1 October 2011, representing an all-time high. 
The largest contribution to the rise was from an increase in the price of diesel, which rose by 13.9 per cent in the year to 1 October 2011.  In addition, tyre costs rose by 8.3 per cent and overheads by 5.6 per cent in the same period.

Domestic haulage rates rose by an average of just 2.8 per cent in the nine months to 1 October 2011, and international haulage rates by an average of just 1.6 per cent in the same period. 
The update also found that as many as forty-five per cent of the contributors had not increased their haulage rates since the start of 2011.

Bruce Goodhart, FTA research analyst, said: “Commercial vehicle operators are under intense pressure from their customers to suppress haulage rates at a time when the cost of running a truck has risen inexorably and fuel prices nearing record levels. This “squeeze” has left balance sheets fragile and carriers vulnerable during a period of weak economic growth.”

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