As expected, the number of available loads on the spot truckload freight market surged last week compared to the previous week, which was shortened by the Thanksgiving holiday, according to a DAT Trendlines report.
Less expected was the unseasonably high number of loads posted to the DAT network of load boards during the week ending Dec. 3: a 64% jump in the number of available loads compared to a 13% increase in the number of posted trucks.
The spot van load-to-truck ratio is the highest since June 2014; the refrigerated ratio is at its highest since March 2015:
- Van L/T: 4.7 (up 61%)
- Reefer L/T: 8.2 (up 36%)
- Flatbed L/T: 18.8 (up 27%)
With demand on the upswing, rates rose across all three equipment types:
- Vans: $1.74/mile, up 8 cents
- Reefers: $1.96/mile, up 1 cent
- Flatbeds: $1.91/mile, up 2 cents
Those rates include a fuel surcharge. The average price of on-highway diesel gained 2.4% compared to the previous week at $2.48/gallon.
Van Loads Soar: The number of van load posts soared 80% and truck posts increased 11% week over week. Spot van rates stayed strong in key regional markets:
- Chicago, $2.09/mile, unchanged
- Dallas, $1.57/mile, up 2 cents
- Charlotte, $2.02/mile, up 5 cents
- Buffalo, N.Y., $2.12/mile, up 10 cents
- Los Angeles, $2.16/mile, down 3 cents
Reefers Cooling: Reefer load posts were up 49% last week and truck posts increased 9%. With holiday produce on the move, the national average rate for November was 6 cents higher than October’s average. But prices are now tailing off in produce markets:
- Crops out of Green Bay are mostly finished and prices on some lanes fell hard. Green Bay-Joliet, Ill., was down 36 cents to $1.97/mile
- Out of California, loads on the Ontario-Chicago lane paid 20 cents less last week at $1.71/mile, and Fresno-Boston slipped 17 cents to $1.91/mile
- Miami rates slipped after big gains in the previous week. Miami-Boston fell 22 cents to $1.63/mile, and Miami-Elizabeth, N.J., dropped 21 cents to $1.47/mile
Flatdecks Bounce Back: Flatbed demand bounced back after Thanksgiving: the number of flatbed load posts increased 59% and truck posts gained 26% compared to the previous week.
Rates are derived from DAT RateView, which provides real-time reports on prevailing spot market and contract rates, as well as historical rate and capacity trends. All reported rates include fuel surcharges.