September 4, 2014 12:00 PM, EDT

Class 8 Orders Post Strong August Growth

Shane Bevel/Bloomberg News

Class 8 truck orders in August were unusually strong, rising about 30%, as freight volumes and rates improved and fleets rushed to fill available build slots, research firms and analysts said last week.

Consulting firm ACT Research said its preliminary order total of 25,400 was “atypically robust”, tying the increase to rate and volume growth. ACT pegged medium duty orders at 17,700.

FTR, another freight consulting firm, gauged orders at 24,947 units, a 29% increase, noting that it was the19th consecutive n month of year-over-year increases. FTR’s report also said dealer incentives spurred orders.

Robert W. Baird analyst David Leiker said in a report that August’s strength was notable because it is typically one of the slowest months for orders. He added that some of the order activity “was to secure remaining build slots for 2014.”

For the past 12 months, total orders for Classes 5-8 have totaled 531,500 ACT reported, an increase of 20%.