Spot truckload freight dips

May 13, 2015

April truckload freight dropped 27% on the spot market compared to 2014 and fell 10% from March of this year, according to the latest data from DAT. When compared to 2013 and all previous years, April 2015 volume exceeded same-month totals.

The DAT North American Freight Index measures truckload freight demand and capacity.

By equipment type, freight volume declined 23% for vans and 25% for refrigerated (“reefer”) trailers compared to March, but flatbed freight availability increased 18% month over month. Rates by equipment type on the spot market followed the trends in volume, slipping 2.5% for vans and 0.5% for reefers, while flatbed rates rose 0.5%, compared to March.

Compared to April 2014, freight volume declined for all equipment types: down 18% for vans, 4.9% for reefers, and 38% for flatbeds. Line-haul rates were up, however: van rates rose 4.6%, reefers were up 3.4%, and flatbed rates rose 3.9%, compared to April 2014.

Although the line-haul portion of the rate increased year over year, carriers received a lower total rate due to declining fuel prices and associated surcharges, DAT said. The total rate declined on both a month-over-month and year-over-year basis for all equipment types.

Reference rates are derived from DAT RateView. Rates are cited for line haul only, excluding fuel surcharges, except where noted. The monthly DAT North American Freight Index reflects spot market freight availability on the DAT Network of load boards in the United States and Canada.

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