Photo: Sean Kilcarr/Fleet Owner
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DAT: Spot rates rise for dry van, flatbed

Dec. 13, 2017
For the week of Dec. 9 spot rates for dry van and flatbed loads jumped a penny per mile each, but fell for refrigerated freight postings.

The national average spot rate for dry van TL loads increased one penny to $2.10 per mile during the week ending Dec. 9, which is a three-year high, according to load board data tracked by DAT Solutions.

Spot prices for flatbed freight also remain high for this time of year, with the national average also increasing a penny to $2.31 per mile. However, the national average spot rate for refrigerated loads tumbled seven cents to $2.40 per mile amid what DAT described as a “lull” in the movement of temperature-controlled goods before the holidays.

However, the overall number of available loads in all three freight categories dipped 10% while a 12% increase in posted spot market capacity pushed load-to-truck ratios down:

  • Dry van: 7.2 available loads per truck, down from 9.3
  • Refrigerated: 9.8 loads per truck, falling from a multi-year high
  • Flatbed: 27.9 loads per truck

DAT said spot dry van volumes declined 14% and truck posts increased 12%. Western markets remain solid with the average outbound rate from Los Angeles up four cents to $2.74/per mile. Memphis, another key market for retail goods, added three cents to jump to $2.40 per mile.

Refrigerated load postings fell 17% and truck posts increased 12% compared to the previous week. The reefer rate dipped despite higher prices in several important markets including Atlanta (up four cents to $2.70 per mile), Lakeland, FL (up seven cents to $1.24 per mile), and McAllen, TX (up four cents to $2.10 per mile).

DAT added that one statistic to keep an eye on is the price of on-highway diesel fuel, which is holding at $2.92 per gallon. Prices dropped in most regions across the U.S. last week but are nearly 50 cents per gallon higher than at this time last year.

About the Author

Fleet Owner Staff

Our Editorial Team

Kevin Jones, Editorial Director, Commercial Vehicle Group

Cristina Commendatore, Executive Editor

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