September ended with a freight – vehicle ratio of 53:47 and raised hopes that the final quarter would also start with a surplus of freight. In the past years the September and October results were almost identical, with the 3rd quarter ending with a ratio of 68:32 and the 4th quarter beginning with 69:31 in 2010. One year later TimoCom's transport barometer showed exactly the same ratio for both months – 60:40. However, this year the September figures could not be matched. October saw only 48 of the 53 percent freight share from the previous month.
During the freight month November numbers went down even further. The ratio of freight offers to available vehicle space was at a low of 38:62. "The first two months of this quarter were far below last year's levels. In 2011 freight was 12 percent higher, in 2010 it was even up to 25 percentage points above last year's reference result! Transport service providers that still had goods to transport in October and November thanks, for instance, to long-term contracts could consider themselves lucky", is how TimoCom's Chief Representative Marcel Frings describes the situation on the European transport market at the beginning of the 4th quarter.
2012 was a year of ups and downs
The closing quarter of 2012 reflected the year as a whole. Throughout its course positive news was followed by negative news in the following month. However, each weak month was followed by a better one. 2012 literally was a year of ups and downs. Also in the 4th quarter: "While TimoCom's transport barometer only showed a ratio of 38:62 in November, it went up by a full ten percentage points in December", says Marcel Frings, "The impact of the Christmas shopping business upon the transport industry is clearly noticeable. The short working weeks around the bank holidays were a logistical challenge as a lot had to be moved within a few days." And it was worth it: at 48:52, the freight - vehicle ratio for December was above last year's results for the first time this year (44:56 in 2011). The transport and logistics industry hopes that this impetus can be carried into 2013.