Broker group responds to Trump allegation of ‘price gouging’ truckers

The group says that the real problem is "too many trucks chasing too little freight."

Trump

Soon after President Trump appeared on Fox News and said that U.S. truckers are the victims of price gouging, one of the nation’s largest third party logistics organizations fired back.

On May 8, Trump appeared on the Fox News show “Fox and Friends” and told viewers via phone interview that truckers are “price gouged.” The President’s remarks were a direct response to trucker protests over low freight rates and lack of broker transparency that have taken place in Washington D.C. since May 1. Trump ended his remarks on the trucker protests by promising “We’re going to take care of that.”

Soon after the President’s remarks, the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) issued a formal response denying the freight gouging accusations.

You can view the statement below.

We were disappointed to see President Trump’s comments this morning in response to a question from Ainsley Earhardt of Fox & Friends regarding perceived price-gouging by transportation brokers during the COVID-19 crisis. This position could not be further from the truth. As the President should know, real estate agents don’t determine the sales price of buildings, the market does. The same is true in trucking.

As the voice of the 3PL industry, TIA welcomes the opportunity to discuss the situation with the Administration, as well as with all parties involved, in a formal setting – not through completely misconstrued and misrepresented statements across social media and other channels.

We too love the truckers. Our members can’t survive without them, and they need our members too. No American business is doing well right now. What independent truckers need right now is access to federal relief funding, and President Trump should direct the SBA to take action to support them rather than pointing fingers at other American small businesses, the vast majority of which also support President Trump.

3PLs and transportation brokers are not price-gouging – there is simply not enough freight to support all of the carriers. In this case, we simply aren’t shipping much of anything and there are too many trucks chasing too little freight. This has been further exacerbated by the Department of Transportation’s relaxing of the hours-of-service regulations, which have created more artificial capacity in the marketplace.The result is depressed rates, and rates will remain depressed until we ship more, or trucks leave the market. All of the publicly traded 3PLs reported losses in revenue and gross margin in the first quarter. All American businesses are suffering. Picking-on one segment of one industry is not the answer. Getting America back to work, however, is the answer.It is a conscious and deliberate business decision made by independent carries to contract and negotiate with 3PLs to move the shippers’ freight. If the carrier wanted to field their own sales forces, they could get 100% of the rate – and many carriers do so. To blame 3PLs for this situation is not only irresponsible but also reckless.

You can click here to view video of Trump’s remarks.