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Turkey’s Earthquakes Paralyze Third of Steel Output Capacity

turkey earthquake steel

Turkey’s Earthquakes Paralyze Third of Steel Output Capacity

Large steel mills in southern Turkey are expected to remain shut for weeks, with production lines idle and workers trying to cope with the impact of the massive twin earthquakes that shook the region.

About a dozen facilities in Iskenderun and Osmaniye — close to the epicenter of the Feb. 6 temblors — account for a third of national steel output, according to Veysel Yayan, secretary-general of the Turkish Steel Producers Association.

Although plants in the area suffered no physical damage, many workers or their family members had died, while survivors struggle to get by in makeshift conditions, he  said.

“All steelmakers in the area are closed,” he said by phone on Monday. “The plants may remain shut at least until the end of this month, or possibly until mid-March.”

Turkey is a top 10 global producer and exporter of steel, and the industry is among the first to provide an assessment of the toll from the deadliest temblors to hit the country in almost a century.

Although their impact on regional activity isn’t yet fully clear, Bloomberg Economics has estimated that addressing the aftermath may require the equivalent of 5.5% of gross domestic product in public spending.

A business group has put the economic cost of the earthquakes at over $84 billion — including damage to buildings and loss in national income. Declines in the labor force would cost another $2.9 billion, the Turkish Enterprise and Business Confederation said in a Feb. 10 report.

‘Need Calibrating’

The steel mills are facing another disruption after having to dispatch machinery and equipment to help out the rescue effort. “Cranes and some other key equipment will need calibrating” after the work ends, Yayan said.

Iskenderun Demir ve Celik AS, a unit of Turkey’s biggest steel group Erdemir, Tosyali Group’s Toscelik, Tosyali Demir Celik AS and Tosyali Toyo Celik AS, a joint venture with Japan’s Toyo Kohan Co. Ltd., MMK Metalurji, a unit of Russian Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works, are among companies that operate in the region.

Steelmakers elsewhere in Turkey will have to prioritize domestic demand over exports, according to Yayan. The country’s annual steel production capacity, at 55 million tons a year, is more than sufficient to cover local demand, he said.

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Contract Logistics Market Worth USD 437.52 Billion by 2029 Market Dynamics, Trends and Competitive Landscape and Forecast 2029

The market is expected to grow from USD 243.5 Billion in 2021 to USD 437.52 Billion in 2029, at a CAGR of 7.6 percent over the forecast period from 2022 to 2029, according to the “Contract Logistics Market” research released by Maximize Market Research.

Contract Logistics Market Scope and Research Methodology

The Contract Logistics Market research report new product launches and the expansion of already existing businesses are expected to benefit the key players in maintaining their dominance in the global market of Contract Logistics Market. Market segmentation analysis includes qualitative and quantitative research incorporating the impact of economic and policy aspects. The report covers regional and country level analysis integrating the demand and supply forces that are influencing the growth of the market, competitive landscape involving the market share of major players, along with the new projects and strategies adopted by players, and comprehensive company profiles covering the product offerings, key financial information, recent developments, SWOT analysis, and strategies employed by the major market players

The research report involves the extensive usage of both primary and secondary data sources. The research process involves the study of various factors affecting the industry, including the government policy, market environment, competitive landscape, historical data, present trends in the market, technological innovation, upcoming technologies and the technical progress in related industries, and market risks, opportunities, market barriers, and challenges.

Contract Logistics Market Overview

The contract logistics market provides value-added services, transportation and warehousing also, it provides after-market service, planning, and production activities. Increasing adoption of IoT and innovation in technologies also, logistics companies are expected to utilize artificial technology expected to drive the contract logistics market demand during the forecast period.

The market is expected to increase as a result of the expanding e-commerce sector, rising food and beverage consumption, rising urbanization levels, rising consumer confidence index, and growing emphasis on environmentally friendly supply chains. However, the lack of trained workers in developing nations and the fierce rivalry will hinder the industry’s expansion. Increasing consolidation activities, technical improvements, widespread acceptance of the internet of things (iot), and the emergence of blockchain services are a few prominent themes.

Contract Logistics Market Dynamics

Software for logistics management that is cloud-integrated makes it possible to track, change, and monitor pricing and inventory in real-time. Cloud-based logistics software offers real-time accuracy and complete system and process management. It makes it possible to trace a single shipment at every point in its trip, reroute a missing consignment, and save a lot of money on lost items and late deliveries. Thanks to cloud-based logistics software, all players in a trade network may join and exchange data in real-time, make rapid decisions, and grow to meet the needs of the contract logistics market.

Systems for supply chains that are cloud-based SaaS offer a number of benefits. It provides a holistic perspective of all logistical activities by increasing transparency and teamwork. Putting in place a cloud infrastructure reduces both the upfront and recurring expenditures. Additionally, it increases the effectiveness of the supply chain in the contract logistics market and offers the potential to scale up to meet the needs of the company.

Contract Logistics Market Regional Insights

North America held a 56% share of the market in 2021. The North American region is expected to grow significantly throughout the forecast period. Increasing demand for e-commerce and same-day delivery is expected to drive the market in the North American region. North American companies are started participating in the market delivering services at various levels. Also, the growing adoption of more integrated services and data management for flexible solutions penetrates the market growth during the forecast period. While the US market is the largest and is progressively growing, Canada’s e-commerce sector is the one that is expanding the quickest in the region. The Mexican e-commerce market is expected to grow at a healthy clip over the next five years despite the country’s comparatively low user penetration of e-commerce. The majority of e-commerce businesses award contracts to logistics service providers for storage and distribution. Business models for high-velocity e-commerce demand the deployment of technology tools that speed up fulfillment processes.

Contract Logistics Market Segmentation

By Mode:

• Exhaust Gas Recirculation

• Turbocharger

• Organic Rankine Cycle

• Other

 

By Vehicle Type:

• Passenger cars

• Light commercial Vehicle

• Truck

• Buses

 

By Components:

• EGR Component

• Turbocharger Component

• Organic Ranking Cycle Component

• Thermoelectric Generator Component

Contract Logistics Market Key Competitors:

• Siemens AG

• Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.

• General Electric

• ABB

• Boustead International Heaters

• Forbes Marshall

• Promec Engineering

• Terrapin

• Wood Plc (Amec Foster Wheeler)

• Climeon; BoschIndustriekessel GmbH

• AURA GmbH & Co.

• Exergy S.p.A.

• IHI Corporation.

 

Key Offerings:

• Market Share, Size & Forecast by Revenue | 2022−2029

• Market Dynamics – Growth Drivers, Restraints, Investment Opportunities, and Key Trends

• Market Segmentation – A detailed analysis by Mode, Type of Vehicle, Component, and Region

• Competitive Landscape – Top Key Vendors and Other Prominent Vendors

Maximize Market Research is leading research firm, has also published the following reports:

Courier Services Market– Courier Services Market size was valued at USD 383.02 Bn. in 2021 and the total Grapheme Battery revenue is expected to grow by 5.8 % from 2022 to 2029, reaching nearly USD 601.32 Bn. increasing competitiveness and growing demand for e-commerce and customer expectation driving courier service market demand globally.

Invoice Factoring Market – Invoice Factoring Market was valued at USD 1.92 Billion in 2021 and is expected to reach USD 4.15 Billion by 2029, exhibiting a CAGR of 10.11 % during the forecast period (2022-2029.

Automotive Glow Plug Market : Automotive Glow Plug Market was valued at US$ 2.9 Bn. in 2021 and the total revenue is expected to grow at 4.2% of CAGR through 2022 to 2029, reaching nearly US$ 4.03 Bn. Increasing use of light commercial vehicles, demand for commercial cars, and therefore glow plugs from OEM and aftermarket channels, has been steadily increasing in the region

Procurement-as-a-Service Market : Procurement-as-a-Service Market was valued at USD 3.20 Billion in 2021, and is expected to reach USD 5.30 Billion by 2029, exhibiting a CAGR of 6.5 % during the forecast period (2022-2029). Adoption of Cognitive Procurement Technologies drive the demand of market.

Blockchain-as-a-Service Market: Blockchain-as-a-Service Market was valued at US$ 829.2 Mn. in 2021 and the total revenue is expected to grow at 60.1% of CAGR through 2022 to 2029, reaching nearly US$ 35792.3 Mn.

IMO SCS Global

MODE Global Announces Corporate Partnership with United Way of Metropolitan Dallas

MODE Global is excited to announce the establishment of a corporate partnership with the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, an initiative under the Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) program.

“Since its inception, MODE has recognized the value of giving back to its communities,” said MODE Chief Legal Officer and head of ESG, Sharon Johnson. “MODE amplifies its culture of caring through activities of social impact, including engaging with the United Way to further develop social programs within our communities. We have been actively working on the development of initiatives with the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, including the buildout of a workplace campaign.”

The United Way campaign will cascade across MODE’s office locations. Programs like these underscore MODE’s dedication to ESG and the mission of the MODE ESG Committee to focus on serving the needs of MODE’s communities, ensuring social corporate responsibility and encouraging sustainable solutions for shippers and carriers.

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Venezuela, Colombia Open Binational Bridge to Boost Trade

Venezuela and Colombia officials opened the Atanasio Girardot international bridge on Sunday, allowing vehicles carrying both passengers and cargo to cross the border between both countries.

Completed in 2016 but never used, the bridge also known as Tienditas was inaugurated with a ceremony led by authorities from both countries, including Colombia’s commerce minister German Umana and transportation minister Guillermo Reyes, as well as governor of the Venezuelan border state of Tachira, Freddy Bernal.

The opening marks the most recent step toward a normalization of relations between the two countries after Colombian president Gustavo Petro took office in August.

Ties between the neighboring nations had soured after former president Ivan Duque joined the US and dozens of other countries in supporting opposition leader Juan Guaidó as Venezuela’s legitimate leader in 2019, as part of a bid to isolate President Nicolas Maduro. Venezuela’s opposition put an end to Guaidó’s interim government Friday.

All border crossings between Colombia and Venezuela at the Norte de Santander area have now been fully reactivated, Reyes said on Twitter.

The Tienditas bridge is expected to boost trade between the two countries. Colombian exports to Venezuela dropped to about $330 million in 2021 from $6 billion in 2008. Colombian authorities expect total trade to reach $4 billion to $5 billion by the end of Petro’s presidency.

rail corn passenger norfolk MNBR

Rail Traffic for the Week Ending December 24, 2022

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) today reported U.S. rail traffic for the week ending December 24, 2022.

For this week, total U.S. weekly rail traffic was 400,289 carloads and intermodal units, down 4.8 percent compared with the same week last year.

Total carloads for the week ending December 24 were 193,195 carloads, down 4.1 percent compared with the same week in 2021, while U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 207,094 containers and trailers, down 5.5 percent compared to 2021.

Five of the 10 carload commodity groups posted an increase compared with the same week in 2021. They included motor vehicles and parts, up 1,486 carloads, to 11,349; petroleum and petroleum products, up 892 carloads, to 9,599; and nonmetallic minerals, up 870 carloads, to 23,735. Commodity groups that posted decreases compared with the same week in 2021 included coal, down 9,265 carloads, to 50,264; chemicals, down 1,069 carloads, to 29,505; and grain, down 997 carloads, to 18,198.

For the first 51 weeks of 2022, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 11,796,291 carloads, down 0.1 percent from the same point last year; and 13,266,919 intermodal units, down 4.9 percent from last year. Total combined U.S. traffic for the first 51 weeks of 2022 was 25,063,210 carloads and intermodal units, a decrease of 2.7 percent compared to last year.

North American rail volume for the week ending December 24, 2022, on 12 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads totaled 278,859 carloads, down 3.5 percent compared with the same week last year, and 268,287 intermodal units, down 6.7 percent compared with last year. Total combined weekly rail traffic in North America was 547,146 carloads and intermodal units, down 5.1 percent. North American rail volume for the first 51 weeks of 2022 was 34,396,219 carloads and intermodal units, down 1.9 percent compared with 2021.

Canadian railroads reported 64,912 carloads for the week, down 8.3 percent, and 45,613 intermodal units, down 20.6 percent compared with the same week in 2021. For the first 51 weeks of 2022, Canadian railroads reported cumulative rail traffic volume of 7,409,978 carloads, containers and trailers, down 0.7 percent.

Mexican railroads reported 20,752 carloads for the week, up 25.5 percent compared with the same week last year, and 15,580 intermodal units, up 41.6 percent. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first 51 weeks of 2022 was 1,923,031 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, up 4.3 percent from the same point last year.

Power Outages, Flight Delays as US Storm Leaves Trail of Chaos

Power Outages, Flight Delays as US Storm Leaves Trail of Chaos

Dangerously cold temperatures settled over a wide swath of the US and Canada on Saturday as a massive winter storm upended Christmas holiday travel and left millions without power or facing rolling blackouts.

Utility companies from Texas to New York City were urging customers to conserve power to protect supply as people turned up their thermostats in temperatures the National Weather Service describes as “life threatening.”

Meanwhile, thousands of flights were canceled or delayed on both Saturday and Sunday, according to FlightAware, and road travel has been treacherous, forcing some to cancel Christmas plans.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul, who has mobilized the National Guard to the state’s western Erie Country, the region hardest hit by the storm, said it “may go down as one of the worst in history.” Buffalo Niagara International Airport is closed at least through Monday morning, she told a news conference on Saturday. In New York City, Hochul toured flooded areas of the Rockaways in Queens and said she has asked the federal government to declare a disaster area.

Temperatures were 20 to 30 degrees Fahrenheit (11 to 17 C) below normal across much of the central and eastern US, the NWS said, and snow totals in parts of the Midwest have reached or are almost at record levels. Buffalo probably set a record with 77 inches (196 cm) of snowfall in part of the city from Thursday night until Saturday morning, with more on the way in the region through Saturday night, the weather agency said.

It’s just the latest example of extreme weather brought on by climate change wreaking havoc on power grids, halting travel and upending economies. This time, an extreme swerve in the jet stream was blamed.

Power grids were taxed by frigid temperatures, causing one of the most sprawling US power outages in years. Some 1.6 million homes and businesses from Texas to New England were without power early Saturday as the storm marched across the country, according to Poweroutage.us, which tracks utility websites. The number fell to almost 850,000 by late afternoon. North Carolina and Maine were hardest hit, accounting for nearly two-thirds the outages.

Consolidated Edison Inc. which supplies electric service in New York, parts of New Jersey and Pennsylvania, on Saturday evening urged customers to “conserve energy due to frigid weather and increased demand on interstate pipelines that bring natural gas into the New York City Metropolitan region.”

The call for conservation covers Con Edison’s 1.1 million natural gas and 3.5 million electric customers and its steam customers in Manhattan, a statement said. It will remain in effect until further notice.

The nation’s largest power grid, which stretches from Illinois to New Jersey and serves 65 million people, said it might be forced to employ rolling blackouts as the cold drove demand for electricity to almost unprecedented levels. The grid operator, PJM Interconnection LLC, urged customers to conserve.

“The possibility of rotating customer outages is real,” said PJM Senior Vice President of Operations Mike Bryson in a video posted on Twitter. “We are going to do everything we can to prevent that, but we think it’s important that consumers are ready in case we have to take that step.”

The US Energy Department declared a power emergency in Texas, citing a shortage of electricity as an Arctic winter blast causes power plants to fail.

In Canada, where every province and territory is under an emergency weather warning, more than 200,000 customers out of about 4.6 million were without power on Saturday, according to utility Hydro-Québec.

The Tennessee Valley Authority ordered rolling blackouts for the second straight day as demand for power soared while high winds knocked power plants offline. Duke Energy Corp. is undertaking rolling outages in North Carolina.

Nashville Mayor John Cooper asked the city’s NFL team, the Titans, to postpone its game against the Houston Texans. The game kicked off about an hour later than scheduled.

US natural gas production suffered its worst one-day drop in more than a decade on Friday as liquids froze in pipes, forcing wells to shut. Supplies of the heating and power-generation fuel across the continental US shrank by nearly 10 billion cubic feet, or roughly 10%, from the previous day as temperatures across key producing areas including in top supplier Texas fell below freezing, according to BloombergNEF data.

Meanwhile, domestic demand surged to the highest daily level since early 2019. Early pipeline nominations tracked by BNEF indicate that gas supplies may start to rebound Saturday while still trailing normal levels.

The storm moved over western Quebec by Saturday morning, keeping conditions in the US Northeast windy, said Marty Rausch, a meteorologist with the Weather Prediction Center. It will begin to lift out Sunday into Monday, when the central and eastern parts of the US will begin to warm up.

The storm, which forecasters described as a once-in-a-decade phenomenon because of its size and speed, left more than 200 million Americans — around 60% of the country — under some form of winter weather warning or advisory starting Friday. It achieved the status of a “bomb cyclone” as it swept east.

It also created “substantial disruptions” at FedEx Express hubs in Memphis and Indianapolis, potentially delaying holiday packages from arriving by Christmas, the shipping company said in a statement.

airport Airlines delay, cancel flights across US as Winter storm disrupts holiday travel

Airlines Delay, Cancel Flights Across US as Winter Storm Disrupts Holiday Travel

Winter storms pummeling vast areas of the US are prompting widespread flight cancellations and delays from East Coast hubs to the Pacific Northwest, upending airline operations during the busy holiday travel season.

About 3,900 US flights were canceled on Friday as of 11:40 a.m. Eastern, bringing the total to more than 6,500 for the past two days, according to tracking site FlightAware.

Airports in Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, Buffalo and Seattle were taking the brunt of the impacts with airlines scrapping between one-third and two-thirds of operations, FlightAware reported. New York’s LaGuardia was also hit hard, dropping about 30% of its normal flights. Nearby John F. Kennedy International and Newark Liberty International airports reported less than 10% cancellations, but the rate was still higher than normal.

“It’s so unfortunate,” Helane Becker, a Cowen Inc. analyst, said in an email. “It will be a mess and people will be disappointed. Delays are better than cancellations, but there is nothing they can do about the weather.”

Read more: Wheat climbs as deep freeze stokes fear of shrinking us crops

Airlines have for days been proactively trimming their schedules and urging passengers to reschedule flights in an attempt to make the process more orderly. That way, travelers can stay home until their new flight instead of “going to the airport and hoping for the best,” Becker said.

The Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement Friday that severe weather “moving across the Great Lakes into the Northeast will have a major impact on the national airspace system today.” In addition to problems from the storms, the agency warned of heavier-than-normal volumes in Puerto Rico, Gulf of Mexico destinations and ski country areas.

The weather woes add additional stress to airlines, some of which have in recent weeks reported slack demand in December. Carriers have been counting on a steady recovery in air travel to help them return to pre-pandemic sales levels.

Southwest Airlines Co. reported the biggest impacts among carriers Friday, canceling 798, or 19%, of its flights. Chicago’s Midway, one of its busiest airports, reported about half of its arrivals and departures were canceled, according to FlightAware.

Alaska Air Group Inc. dropped 312 flights from its schedule Friday, or 40%, as snow and ice hit its Seattle hub.

busiest passenger rail corridor in America

Biden-Harris Administration, USDOT Make Available Nearly $9 billion to Modernize Busiest Passenger Rail Corridor in America

The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) today announced a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) making available nearly $9 billion in funding to upgrade and expand passenger rail services along the Northeast Corridor (NEC). These funds will be issued through the Federal-State Partnership for Intercity Passenger Rail Grant Program (Partnership Program), which grew to $36 billion over the next five years thanks to President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Today’s investment will fund projects of national and regional significance, improving infrastructure, equipment, and facilities, including bridges and tunnels, rail stations, and track. This investment will help improve reliability and result in fewer delays for the over 200 million annual trips taken by commuters and intercity passenger riders on the Northeast Corridor.

“Every day, hundreds of thousands of Americans rely on the Northeast Corridor, our country’s busiest rail route,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “Americans deserve to have the best rail system in the world, and the investments we are announcing today will serve to modernize the Northeast Corridor for generations of passengers.”

The Northeast Corridor, stretching from Washington, D.C. to Boston, is one of the highest-volume rail lines in the world. The area it spans accounts for 20 percent of our nation’s GDP. The number of Americans utilizing the corridor continues to grow, approaching pre-pandemic levels, with Amtrak ridership alone more than doubling in the last 12 months to 9.2 million passengers annually.

Administered by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), the Partnership Program is a competitive discretionary grant program that has supported the rehabilitation and renewal of intercity passenger rail infrastructure for years. Most recently, the program advanced project development and construction for major bridge replacement projects, including the Susquehanna River Bridge in Maryland, the Connecticut River Bridge, and the Portal Bridge in New Jersey.

The NEC Project Inventory, which FRA issued in November, will guide investments under the Partnership Program and promote a transparent, systematic, long-term strategy for growing the NEC. It prioritizes key projects for funding, such as the repair and modernization of major bridges and tunnels – all of which are over a century old – which include the Baltimore and Potomac Tunnel in Maryland, the Walk Bridge in Connecticut, and the Hudson Tunnel in New Jersey, part of the Gateway Program.

“Today’s investments are a major step towards reversing a half-century of underinvestment in vital rail infrastructure and will result in fewer delays for millions of riders and travelers,” said FRA Administrator Amit Bose. “The expanded Partnership Program funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will ensure that the Northeast Corridor thrives as the region’s economic and transportation backbone, while making its services more reliable, available, and accessible to even more people.”

Earlier this month, FRA also made nearly $2.3 billion available through the Partnership Program for intercity and high-speed rail projects nationwide. Taken together, more than $11 billion in passenger rail funds have been made available in the first round of funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.

US retailers’ unusual request to suppliers: Stop sending new products

US Retailers’ Unusual Request to Suppliers: Stop Sending New Products

US retailers have so much extra stuff in their stores and warehouses this holiday season that they are telling some of their suppliers to stop sending them products — even if those items are selling well.

The unusual move highlights the magnitude of the excess merchandise that US retail companies are struggling to sell. The average amount of inventory held by the 20 biggest public apparel companies in the US was up 26% to $2.1 billion in the third quarter of this year versus pre-pandemic levels in 2019, according to an analysis by consultancy AlixPartners of S&P Capital IQ data. The figures are unadjusted for inflation. And the average inventory held was up 30% versus the same period last year.

Steve Greenspon, chairperson of the International Housewares Association trade group, said an employee at a major retailer told him recently that executives are instructing buyers to reduce inventory. “‘You could give it to me for free and I cannot take it,’” Greenspon said the buyer told him.

Executives at brands including VF Corp., the owner of Vans and North Face; Guess? Inc.; and Hanesbrands Inc. have talked in their most recent earnings calls about the pullback from their wholesale customers — whether those are small boutiques or large department stores.

“Many of our wholesale customers had warehouse constraints that limited their ability to take delivery of new product during the quarter,” La-Z-Boy Chief Financial Officer Bob Lucian told analysts during a Dec. 1 earnings call.

Supply-Chain Woes

The buildup of inventory is a consequence of supply-chain problems in 2021 that delayed the arrival of many holiday shipments until the spring, just as rising inflation forced consumers to downshift their spending. Companies including Target Corp., Walmart Inc. and others said they were canceling orders earlier this year to try to slow the growth of the piles of poor-selling merchandise. Retailers have also increased the breadth and depth of discounts to stoke demand among inflation-shy customers.

Those measures have helped reduce inventory — but not enough, hence the trend of recent months.

“I’ve never really seen a time before — or heard of a time — when retailers have been cutting back on what sells just because they don’t have the space,” said Paul Cosaro, chief executive officer of Picnic Time, which sells picnic gear and other home goods. “It’s not because of soft sales,” he said, adding the pullback was notable but not widespread.

Cosaro and some other suppliers say demand has been robust for their products when they send the items directly to consumers on behalf of a retailer, a process known as drop shipping. Retailers have been leaning more on some suppliers to handle shipments to avoid having to hold the inventory themselves or delaying orders, forcing suppliers to store the merchandise.

“The cost of money and capital is on us,” said Thomas Nichols, president of Pretika Corp., which manufactures and distributes skin-care devices to retailers. “We’ve been ordering less and yet we still have high inventory levels.” Nichols said he’s producing less in order to enter 2023 with lower inventory levels. Storage has become more expensive as US interest rates have gone up and as demand for warehouse space has outpaced supply.

Sharing Pain

“Typically in times of duress, people try to share pain vertically through the supply chain,” said David A. Shiffman, co-head of consumer retail at Solomon Partners, a boutique investment bank. Retailers have also been grappling with inflation that’s at the highest rate in decades and geopolitical and economic headwinds. “I haven’t seen the confluence of this many obstacles in the path of retailers — and the challenges that the C-suite is facing — in three decades,” Shiffman added.

Some of the slowdown in orders is strategic, Shiffman said. Companies, particularly those that sell fashionable apparel and accessories, “want to make room and secure their orders for spring,” he said.

The International Housewares Association’s Greenspon said that in recent weeks, some retailers have started to replenish certain items sooner than he had expected, a sign that some constraints might be starting to ease. He’s also CEO of Honey-Can-Do International, which sells home items and other consumer products to retail companies.

Overall, the race to clear goods is good news for shoppers. “Consumers are going to continue to get phenomenal deals while all of this is going on,” Greenspon said. He expects the excess inventory levels in home goods to start diminishing within the next five to six months.

The combination of excess inventory, increased markdowns and cautious consumers is putting pressure on some retailers’ profitability. That’s making some companies consider charging consumers for returns as a way to increase revenue, said Melissa Minkow, director of retail strategy at digital consultancy CI&T.

“Return policies got really, really loose as a kind of competitive differentiator over the past few years,” she said. “We’re seeing a big pullback on that.”

Logistics industry culture shift targets workforce shortage

Logistics Industry Culture Shift Targets Workforce Shortage

One of the most critical issues facing the logistics industry right now is workforce shortages. While automation and robotics are allowing teams to achieve higher output, simplify complex tasks, and remove manual paperwork — the need for skilled personnel will never be replaced.

The industry is continuing to grow in both size and value, and flow on-impacts from the global pandemic continue to impact day-to-day operations — including remaining workforce shortages.

The unprecedented nature of the pandemic highlighted the critical role of supply chain stability and flexibility in the logistics industry. However, it also brought with it border closures coupled with workforce restrictions, illness, and health precautionary measures that dwindled the workforce at a time when logistics operations were booming.

The wider impact of post-pandemic flow-on include rising labor and operational costs (rising fuel prices and warehouse rent among a few), changes in workforce preferences and accelerated retirement. These trends have coupled to change the workforce of our industry, driving companies to explore new avenues in terms of workforce attraction and retention.

The CartonCloud Logistics Index (CCLI) 2022 Q3 industry whitepaper found ongoing workforce shortages were driving businesses to think outside the box in terms of hiring.

Gathering insights from over 80 members of the logistics industry, from operational roles to senior management, the Q3 CCLI report detailed a strong cultural shift angled at boosting workforce recruitment and retention.

“What it means to work in logistics is changing. Our industry is changing, and while our bread and butter will continue to be the storage and movement of goods, the services and specialized roles supporting this are evolving,” said Mr Fletcher.

“We’re seeing a major shift in the attitudes and tactics surrounding hiring within our industry.

“Companies are working to become more attractive employers by offering flexible work arrangements, on-the-job training, higher pay structures, and career advancement, looking at their own company values and culture.”

Having more defined company values can not only be used to set employers apart from the pack, CartonCloud COO/ Head of North America Shaun Hagen explained.

Strong company values also provide an opportunity for employers to look at bringing in new skill sets, and offering their customers new services, like data analysis, sales and marketing.

“It may be that new logistics employment opportunities emerge as a result of the cultural shifts toward hiring,” Mr Hagen said.

“New members of the workforce will continue to diversify the skill sets held within companies, and the adoption of technology and software solutions will continue to reduce the load of manual tasks, allowing companies to invest in other areas for growth.”

The CCLI report showed adoption of technology is trending upward, driven by greater expectations from both customers and other industry partners for data capture and sharing.

“This is altering the landscape of hiring within the logistics workforce,” Mr Fletcher said.

“Higher tech adoption across the industry brings new roles for data analysis and may open up greater opportunities for hiring flexibility in terms of roles and hours. What’s more, companies using easy-to-operate technology are finding it easier to train and assign workloads within their workforce, which means they can expand their hiring beyond those with prior industry experience.”

CCLI respondents cited flexible hours, on-the-job training, healthy team dynamics, wage incentives, and appropriate benefits as some of the tactics they were using to attract and retain their staff.

The report gathered insights from over 80 members of the logistics industry, across all roles and operations, from Australia and North America.

“The CartonCloud Logistics Index allows us to track and understand the issues that are most important to industry members today, and also gives us the opportunity to provide valuable insights and data back to the industry,” Mr Hagen said.

“We believe in data-led decision-making to drive growth. It’s at the heart of what we do, creating technology that is both powerful and easy to use — based on the most important features logistics people need to grow their business.

“Providing data like this allows us to support industry members to explore their own decisions within an industry context, and grow from the insights shared by others.”

CartonCloud works closely with industry members to identify, track and predict the issues and opportunities facing logistics businesses today and in the future.

To find out more, download the full CartonCloud Logistics Index at cartoncloud.com/cartoncloud-logistics-index-archive or contact the team at CartonCloud for more information on intuitive software systems, built for logistics people.