North American Class 8 vehicle preliminary net orders for June remained soft at 16,500, according to ACT Research Co., LLC (ACT).

Classes 5-7 net orders also fell below trend, but the decline was expected, as medium-duty activity typically tapers off during the summer months. The final numbers, which will be released mid-July, will approach 12,900 for Class 5-7.

The preliminary net order numbers are typically accurate to within 5% of actual.

“The explanation for the soft patch remains of the ‘death-by-a-thousand-cuts’ variety,” said Kenny Vieth, president and senior analyst, ACT Research. “As has been the case since late February/early March, the issue appears to boil down to credit-buying truckers’ confidence in the economy relative to the risk of taking out a sizeable loan to buy a truck. To that end, risk, economic or political, domestic or global, remains high, and memories of 2009 are still fresh.”