National average spot truckload rates lagged for the third consecutive week, but that’s still higher than they were at any time last year, reports DAT Trendlines.
For the week ended January 27, van and flatbed rates each fell 1 cent, with van at $2.26 a mile and flatbed at $2.39 a mile.
Refrigerated freight fell 3 cents to $2.67 a mile as produce and other temperature-controlled products experienced a winter lull.
Spot load-to-truck ratios, previously at record highs, fell 3.0 percent while capacity increased 8.3 percent compared to the week prior.
On loads per truck, van rates were 8.5, down from 9.8; flatbed rates were 53.9, unchanged; and refrigerated rates were 12.8, the same as the week before.
However, DAT Trendlines noted that spot prices for flatbed freight is seasonally high, helped by stronger construction and oil field activity.
Four-week trends for van were down from $2.30 on January 6, to $2.26 on January 27. Flatbed spot market rates for the four-week period were $2.43 on January 6 compared with $2.39 January 27. Reefer spot market rates for the period were $2.71 on January 6 and $2.67 for January 27.
The seven-day average market rate as of January 27 was 0.4 percent per mile for van and 0.8 percent a mile for flatbed.
The report cautioned to keep an eye on diesel fuel prices, as all regions are seeing an increase in price compared with a year ago.