Refrigeratedtransporter 3161 Dat Na Freight Index 032018

Index of spot truckload freight volume achieves record in March

April 17, 2018
Discover why spot truckload freight availability rebounded in March 2018 to set a 20-year record for the DAT North American Freight Index.

Spot truckload freight availability rebounded in March 2018 to set a new 20-year record for the DAT North American Freight Index. The 38% increase in volume, year over year, was due largely to extraordinary demand for flatbed equipment to move industrial cargo for energy and construction.

The Freight Index, a monthly measure of demand for spot market freight, is published by DAT Solutions, which operates North America’s largest load board marketplace.

Van rates were up 3 cents compared with February, and 52 cents year over year. Rates for refrigerated cargo were down 1 cent at $2.40 per mile month over month, but reefer rates rose 53 cents higher than in March 2017.

Flatbed freight rates also set a record in March, at $2.53 per mile, including fuel. Flatbeds got a 16-cent increase month over month, and were paid a full 50 cents more than the average for March 2017.

Rates continued to climb sharply through the first week in April, which is not typical after the close of a fiscal quarter. Van rates are on track to exceed their previous record high of $2.24 per mile, achieved in January, and flatbed rates continue to reach new heights, as well. Reefer rates are lagging, however, because spring produce harvests have not reached their peak.

“Economic growth, particularly in the energy sector, supports heightened demand for truckload transportation, and capacity is not keeping up with that demand,” said Mark Montague, DAT industry analyst. “Unless something changes, we can expect rates to continue rising at least until the end of June.”

Established in 1978, DAT operates a network of load boards serving intermediaries and carriers across North America. For more than a decade it has published its Freight Index, which is representative of the dynamic spot market.

DAT operates the largest truckload freight marketplace in North America. Transportation brokers, carriers, news organizations and industry analysts rely on DAT for market trends and data insights derived from 179 million freight matches in 2017, and a database of $45 billion of market transactions. Related services include a directory of companies with business history, credit, safety, insurance and company reviews; broker transportation management software; authority, fuel tax, mileage, vehicle licensing and registration services; and carrier onboarding.

Access www.DAT.com for complete details.

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