PORTLAND, Ore. — Spot market freight availability dropped sharply in July, returning to typical seasonal levels after an all-time peak in June, according to DAT Solutions, which operates North America’s largest load board marketplace and DAT Freight Index, a monthly indicator of spot market trucking.
Spot truckload freight volume fell 29 percent month over month but increased 3.4 percent compared to July 2017. The decline brings freight levels in line with July volumes in 2017 and 2014, the previous record-holders on the DAT Freight Index
“Spot market rates did not drop as much as we would expect in July,” explained Mark Montague, pricing analyst at DAT. “Going forward, rate trends are likely to follow a normal seasonal pattern but at a level that’s 25 to 30 percent higher than in 2017.”
Compared to June, the national average spot van rate fell 2 cents to $2.29 per mile, while the flatbed rate slid 5 cents to $2.77. Rates for refrigerated (“reefer”) equipment dropped steeply, down 9 cents to $2.61 per mile, as produce season wound down in California.
Spot reefer and flatbed rates both exceeded the comparable contract rates. The average contract reefer rate rose 3 cents to $2.59 per mile while the contract flatbed rate lost 5 cents to $2.73.
Compared to July 2017, the average spot rate for van equipment was 51 cents per mile higher last month, the reefer rate was up 54 cents, and the flatbed rate was 60 cents higher.
Established in 1978, DAT operates a network of load boards serving intermediaries and carriers across North America. For more than a decade DAT has published its Freight Index, which is representative of the dynamic spot market.
The DAT Freight Index reflects load posting volume on the DAT network of load boards, and 100 on the Index represents the average monthly volume in the year 2000. Additional trends and analysis are available at DAT Trendlines.
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 270 million freight matches (2018 estimate) and a database of $57 billion in annual market transactions. Related services include a comprehensive 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.
Founded in 1978, DAT Solutions LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Roper Technologies, a diversified technology company and constituent of the S&P 500, Fortune 1000, and Russell 1000 indices.
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