As the "Made in America" trend continues, the U.S. has seen a steady rise in exports. With manufacturers ramp up their domestic production, transportation could be called upon to deliver more orders to cargo ships or planes so these carriers can take the goods overseas. As a result, drivers will be making more stops and need to take the most direct route to ensure deliveries and pickups are made on time.
Exports on the rise
New reports from the Commerce Department reveal American companies are shipping more domestically made items overseas, and demand for these goods remains strong, despite a shaky global economy. The trade deficit is at its lowest point in more than three-and-a-half years in June, thanks to growing export numbers. This gap dropped 22.4 percent from May to June to $34.2 billion.
U.S. companies shipped more aircraft engines, telecommunications equipment, machinery and farm supplies, according to The Associated Press, but these aren't the only things the country is shipping overseas. Bloomberg Businessweek revealed petroleum and coal exports along the Gulf Coast have more than doubled in recent years, and in some areas of the state of Washington, these exports have more than quadrupled since 2008.
While exports leaped in June, imports fell slightly. The decline of more than 2 percent led imports to fall to $225.4 billion.
Part of the exports boom could be due to the rising costs of overseas labor, which makes it more unaffordable for businesses to manufacture overseas. Some may find it more profitable to produce goods domestically and have them sent to overseas markets or that this strategy allows them to better oversee quality issues.
"A number of companies are doing whatever they can to bring back as much production as they can to the United States," said Joel Naroff, chief economist at Naroff Economic Advisors, according to The AP. "They are facing rising wages in countries such as China and other problems of doing business there."
More demands on company resources
If this trend continues, transportation companies may find themselves completing longer runs or more pickups and deliveries to get products from manufacturing facilities to major export hubs across the country. By employing route optimization software, management teams can ensure the runs their drivers are on are as fuel efficient and timely as possible, boosting business capabilities and better utilizing resources.