The annual US Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP) ‘State of The Logistics Nation’ report has described an American logistics sector hit badly by the recession, yet uncertain about the nature of the recovery. The report noted that logistics spend in the US saw a big fall in 2009 accounting for 7.7 per cent of GDP contrasting with the 9.3 per cent seen in 2008. This number has never fallen below 9 per cent in the past 5 years or below 8 per cent in the past decade, with the 2009 figure clearly illustrating the depth of the recession. The report observed that the drop was caused by two main factors – falling inventory levels and lower freight volumes and while inventory levels fell dramatically, they have since bounced-back to pre-recession levels. Vincent Hartnett, president of Penske Logistics, which sponsored the research and who chaired the conference discussing the report, observed that despite a marked recovery “uncertainty is still the number one consideration”.
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