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Looking back and looking ahead: Predictions and Trends 2020/2021

David Abell

6 minute read


Win-win is a belief in the Third Alternative. It’s not your way or my way; it’s a better way, a higher way.
~Stephen R. Covey~


2020 in Review



2020 has been a whirlwind for any number of reasons including a global pandemic and a bruising US presidential election which have contributed to continuing uncertainty.

In logistics we refer to the ups and downs of the market as “which way the pendulum swings.” Very rarely is the freight market at anything approaching equilibrium. Based on supply and demand, the fluctuations are nothing new and haven’t changed greatly in the last 30 years.

What has changed, however, is the length of time it takes for the pendulum to swing. Historically, it would take years to tip the scales, but that time has shortened to mere months in recent years, and 2020 is a great example of this new paradigm.

Let’s take a look at what happened. In the pandemic’s early days, demand came to a near standstill as manufacturers went off line to take precautionary measures to decrease the spread of Covid-19. Trucking companies saw rates plummet overnight as the need for their services paused.

You might remember at the height of this, independent owner operators were protesting for more transparency in front of the White House because rates had fallen so precipitously. 

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