Have freight rates hit bottom? DAT Trendlines thinks they might, or at least they’re headed that way.
All during October, rates have gone down, “but the pace of decline is slowing,” said the latest Trendline report, adding that van freight is moving from the West to East as Asian imports arrive, presumably in time for Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Van rates were 1 cent lower although reefer rates held steady as the Midwest region of the U.S. continued its produce harvest.
National spot rates for vans were $2.17 at the beginning of the month but by October 27 had dropped to $2.10. Flatbed rates started at $2.53 and had dropped to $2.47 by October 27, and refrigerated rates went from $2.52 to $2.44 during that time.
Compared with the week of October 14-20, the last week of the month showed increases for some freight types and decreases for others.
Spot market loads were up 0.9 percent week-over-week and spot market capacity was up 0.5 percent. Flatbed load-to-truck rates were also up 0.9 percent week-over-week and reefer load-to-truck rates were up 1.6 percent.
In the down column were van load to truck rates (-0.2 percent); spot van rates (-0.5 percent); sport flatbed rates (-0.8 percent); and fuel prices (-0.4 percent).
Spot reefer rates stayed the same.
Dorothy Cox is former assistant editor – now retired – of The Trucker, and a 20-plus-year trucking journalism veteran. She holds a bachelor’s degree in fine arts and a master’s degree in divinity. Cox has been in journalism since 1972. She has won awards for her writing in both mainstream and trucking journalism.