U.S. Diesel Prices Drop 1.2¢

On According to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the average price of diesel fell 1.2¢ to $3.141/gallon. This is a direct impact of the price of oil dropping below $59/barrel, the lowest since mid-March. The DOE also stated that the U.S. average price for regular gasoline has dropped to $2.822/gallon. For more on fuel prices, click here.

USPS Begins Test for Self-Driving Mail Delivery Trucks

On May 28, a two-week test period commenced for transporting mail between Phoenix, Arizona and Dallas, Texas. The program is set to involve five round trips, with each covering over 2,100 miles. The overall purpose of this initiative is to eliminate the need for drivers, as the American Trucking Associations estimates that the driver shortage could rise to over 174,000 drivers by 2024. Read more here.


Canadian Freight Movement Expected to Halt Thursday Amidst ILWU Canada Disagreement

The British Columbia Maritime Employers Association (BCMEA) issued a notice today stating that it will lockout International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) Canada members, effective 08:00 Thursday, May 30, 2019. The lockout is expected to halt nearly all freight movement in and out of the Port of Vancouver and the Port of Prince Rupert until further notice. Federal mediators are involved to help the ILWU and BCMEA broker a new labor contract. For more on the situation, click here.

Midwestern U.S. Flooding Causes Kansas City, MO Gate Closures

Due to flooding throughout the Midwest, train operations in and out of Kansas City have been disrupted. Forecasts predict that flood waters will continue to rise and will not recede to a level that allows for safe rail operations for approximately five days or more. The Norfolk Southern Rail is reporting that all origin-facility ingates are closed to shipments billed to Kansas City and that the Kansas City ingate also remains closed. The Kansas City outgate remains open at this time. For more on the NS gate closure, click here.

Malaysia Plans to Ship 3,000 Tons of Contaminated Recyclables Back to Countries of Origin

After China buckled down on imports of recyclables in 2018, Malaysian seaports have seen a spike in illegal recycling and unsorted trash. On May 28, Yeo Bee Yin, Malaysian Environment Minister, announced that her ministry plans to ship 60 containers of contaminated waste back to Western nations such as the UK, Canada, Australia and the U.S. To learn more, click here.

Retail Consolidation

Walmart’s Grocery Pickup to Account for 33 Percent of the Retailer’s Digital Sales by 2020

Walmart plans to offer its grocery pickup service in more than 3,000 stores by the end of the year. According to data provided by Numerator, the average spend for Walmart grocery pickup is approximately 2.5 times the spend for an in-store shopping trip at the retailer. For more on the service, click here.

Retailers Are Beginning to Target College Students

Many retailers have begun to focus on building relationships with college students as they are embarking on making their own purchasing decisions. Target has opened approximately 100 smaller stores near college campuses that offer demand-specific items such as bedding for dorm rooms. According to Nick Egelanian, President and Founder of SiteWorks, “there’s no question retailers are trying to build loyalty.” Read more here.

Statistic of the Week

8.5 Percent

The increase in population of Buckeye, AZ, the fastest-growing city in the U.S. with a population of 50,000 or more, between July 1, 2017 and July 1, 2018, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. View more stats here.

Links of the Week

Double-Digit Growth Occurs for Several Ports in April

Port of Los Angeles Plans for Autonomous Shipping

DAT Trendlines – Week of May 20

Upcoming Events

Catch up with the Ascent Global Logistics team at the below upcoming events:  

Atlantic City, NJ – June 3-5, 2019

Atlanta, GA – June 10-12, 2019

International Holiday Calendar

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