Afternoon Coffee: No End in Sight for Brexit; Upland’s New PSA Suite; Car Sales, Truck Orders Down

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Brexit negotiations continue to rumble on in the British Parliament, with MPs unable to vote one single plan forward with majority.

Prime Minister Theresa May now wants another deadline extension from the EU in order to carry out negotiations with Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn. This would push Brexit back to May 22 instead of next week. This could result in a tighter relationship to the bloc than previously envisioned.

However, no-deal Brexit is still a possibility that many logistics companies are preparing for.

ISM Non-Manufacturing Index still growing, albeit more slowly this month

ISM NMI dropped to 56.1% for March, a 3.6% drop from the previous month, although the non-manufacturing sector is still in expansion, the 110th straight month of growth. Read the full report here.

Upland introduces professional services automation solution suite

Upland, a cloud-based enterprise work management software provider, announced the launch of Upland PSA, “the first knowledge-enabled Professional Services Automation platform that augments services automation with proposal automation, voice of the customer and employee surveys, customer reference management, and insights-driven business intelligence,” according to a press release.

Read more details in the release right here.

U.S. automotive sales drop in the first quarter of 2019

Major vehicle manufacturers have posted declines for the first quarter of 2019 in US sales. Analysts expect there to be a 3-4% decline in sales compared to this time a year ago. This includes a 5% drop in March compared to 2018.

Car prices are rising, but demand is not rising with it, which is likely to slow production. Supply chains are also thinning out, with US and Canadian railroad shipments of vehicles and parts down 0.6% in 2018, hitting the lowest levels in five years, according to the WSJ.

Heavy-duty truck orders fall to lowest level in years

March saw the lowest number of heavy-duty truck orders since October 2016, with ACT Research and FTR both reporting fewer than 16,000 orders for class-8 trucks through the month.

This may not come as a surprise to many industry experts, after companies ordered at a historic pace towards the end of 2018. Trucking companies are now pausing on orders with wide uncertainty over trade looming. There are signs that inventories may be piling ahead of demand, and shipping rates have also been cooling.

Most fleets will not want to make any big commitments for the time being.

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