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Supply Chain by the Numbers

- July 1, 2022

  Supply Chain by the Numbers for July 1, 2022

Hundeds of Amazon Truck Charging Stations Planned for Racine, Developers Betting Big on Cold Storage; Consumer Confidence Tanks; The Return of Voided Container Ship Sailings




That is how many charging stations for electric trucks are planned for an Amazon delivery station in the Village of Yorkville, Wisconsin (near Racine) after winning an OK from local officials last week. Plans submitted to the village indicate that Amazon could have its eye on a system ultimately capable of charging as many as 760 electric vehicles, primarily its delivery vans. The plan submitted envisions 399 charger initially, 630 as a “future target” and 760 for a “total site.” This project be a significant change in EV charging infrastructure in the state. According to tracking from EV Adoption, as of September 2021, Wisconsin still had fewer than 900 total charging ports in the entire state.


3.3 Million

That’s how many square feet of refrigerated warehouse space was under construction in the US Q2 in without tenants having committing to lease the space, according to a new report released this week by real estate firm CBRE. That was about 1,000% more than was built on spec in 2019. What is going on? According to the Wall Street Journal, warehouse developers are betting that pandemic-driven changes in the way consumers buy groceries and meals are here to stay. With more at home meals, the cold-storage market is also largely insulated from an economic slowdown because people must keep eating. So far, about one-third of the 3.3 million square feet under development has now been leased, in line with what is typical in the broader industrial market for speculative projects. Experts also say that a big share of US refrigerated warehousing is inefficient and dated, which will help drive demand for newer sites that can operate more efficiently.




That was the level in June of the Consumer Confidence Index from the Conference Board, in data released this week. That was down from 73.7 in May, the Index’s lowest monthly reading since March 2013. Concerns about inflation seemed to be the largest factor in the drop. Nearly 30% of those surveyed in June expect business conditions to worsen, according to the Conference Board survey. Meanwhile, a different survey of consumer sentiment, which polls consumer attitudes on personal finance from the University of Michigan, dropped this month to its lowest point on record – not good for the economy.




That was the rather amazing level of cancelled sailings by the 2M alliance of ocean container carriers Maersk and MSC in the second week in May, the most extreme of a return to many voided sailings by carriers in the face of falling shipper demand. That according to the latest report this week from visibility technology provider project44. “With ocean freight spot rates in freefall and demand for containers down year on year, carriers have moved to protect profitability,” the report noted. It suggested other tactics carriers are using include more slow-steaming to bolster rates and mitigate the impact of soaring bunker fuel costs. Project44’s report also says there is a growing trend of carriers diverting ships to “more profitable” routes, leaving some lanes as “‘ghost” services - without a ship assigned.

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