Reporting this morning, Wal-Mart is describing slow sales, and it has guided the street lower for the remainder part of the year. This is not good news but not unexpected for my readers. Until unemployment gets to 6% or lower you can expect to see a slow tough slog on consumer goods and that will deflate the demand for trucks. If you have to continue to look at one economic number which ultimately will drive the demand for transportation, look at unemployment.
If Wal-Mart guides down 1.5% to 3%, which is roughly what the news is saying this morning, that is a lot of empty trucks and containers on the road looking for freight.
Consumer durables appears to still be a strong point in the market but overall the story of a tough slog continues to hold true.