U.S. consumer confidence fell this month to the lowest level in four months, knocked down by a slowdown in hiring. The Conference Board says its consumer confidence index fell to 95.2 in April from 101.4 in March, the lowest reading since December's 93.1.
Confirming months of data that suggested a slowdown, the government said Wednesday that the American economy barely grew in the first quarter of 2015. At 0.2 percent, the pace of growth was the slowest in a year, when a winter wipeout in the first quarter of 2014 prompted the economy to contract at a 2.1 percent rate.
Quotable"I am not bound to win, but I am bound to be true. I am not bound to succeed, but I am bound to live by the light that I have. I must stand with anybody that stands right, stand with him while he is right, and part with him when he goes wrong."
- Abraham Lincoln
Ramp/Dock Report: May 2015
Most class 1 railroads have reported improvements this quarter 2015. Velocity is up and intermodal service is vastly improved over Q1 this year. Please remember our All Decks Intermodal division for intermodal flatbed service throughout Canada, U.S. and Mexico.
LA/LGB ports updates are showing signs of improving. The ports achieved a post-congestion milestone last week with no container ships at anchor for the first time in a very long time! The ports productivity and efficiencies have been deteriorating for over one year now, so any good news is welcome! A grey pool of chassis supplies and the ILWU and PMA agreement seem to be helping ease the backlog. However, harbor drays are still taking over 100 minutes per visit (in gate to out gate). We are now being told that this is the "new normal"! Considering past turn time under 45 minutes, the new normal is certainly going to increase costs and dray rates.
Last week the Ports of LA/LGB were picketed by independent harbor truckers further delaying progress in improving productivity. Owner-operators from Intermodal Bridge Transport, Pacific 9 Transportation, Pacer Cartage and Harbor Rail Transport picketed throughout the port area disrupting cargo operations. Their contention is that they are really employees and not independent operators, (Teamster lead ploy). Democratic Congresswoman, Janine Hahn from Southern California, suggested that Congress look into the issue and stated that "drivers were striking to protest wage theft and unfair labor practices". We will keep you posted on this latest hitch in the get-along!
Lessons from the Past
Why is change a significant part of life? It seems that although it is hardly thought of, change occurs constantly from when we first emerged from the warmth and solitude of the womb to the stark reality of our first breath! Looking back, change is always a moment away or just around the corner. It touches every part of the existence on earth, beginning with the body but including the mind, soul and nature around us. From infancy to mortality, the body continues in change. The mind though better, is not far behind. Its function is to constantly make decisions, some good, others not, but usually resulting in more change. ("Your decisions determine your destiny." _ Unknown)
Some of the more recognizable changes are first day of school, socialization, puberty, love, marriage, childbirth and childrearing, jobs, business, homes, locations, automobiles, clothes, style, habits, relationships, seasons, weather, beliefs, values, behavior...etc, etc. There is no end!
We can embrace it and learn from it or we can cling to the past and hope it passes us by. The answer is clear, as the Chinese proverb states, "The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials." An ugly stone changed by friction can become a thing of beauty. Change is the elixir for complacency...Are you ready for the next event?