BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Warmer temperatures and calmer weather relieved the pressure that had fueled spot rates during the prior week.
Broker-posted spot rates for van equipment in the Truckstop system declined during the week ended Jan. 26 (week 4), especially in refrigerated, according to a news release.
Dry van spot rates gave back about half of the previous week’s gain while refrigerated spot rates fell by about 50% more than they had risen the week before. Flatbed spot rates rose for the fourth straight week to their highest level since late July.
Total load activity eased 2.2% after rising about 4% during the previous week. Total volume was up 0.9% compared to the same 2003 week but nearly 26% below the five-year average. Truck postings increased 7.1%, and the total Market Demand Index — the ratio of loads to trucks — declined to its lowest level of the year.
The total broker-posted rate declined nearly 4 cents after rising 7 cents during the previous week. Rates were about 3% below the same 2023 week and 1.4% below the five-year average. Even with the decrease in the latest week, total rates so far in 2024 are holding more firmly than is typical during the month of January. The recent weather and rising rates for flatbed equipment are the principal factors.
Dry van rates
Dry van spot rates declined just over 3 cents after rising 6.6 cents during the previous week. Rates were 1.6% higher than the same 2023 week — the strongest year-over-year comparison since April 2022 — but 1.7% below the five-year average. Dry van loads were essentially unchanged from the previous week. Volume was 9% above the same 2023 week but 15% below the five-year average for the week.
Refrigerated spot rates fell nearly 19 cents — the largest drop since early January 2023 — after jumping more than 12 cents during the prior week. Rates were more than 3% above the same 2023 week and right on the five-year average for the week. Refrigerated loads fell 16.9%. Volume was more than 19% above the same 2023 week but more than 16% below the five-year average.
Flatbed spot rates moved up more than 1 cent after rising nearly 6 cents during the previous week. Rates were nearly 5% below the same 2023 week and less than 1% below the five-year average. Flatbed loads ticked up 0.4%. Volume was more than 9% below the same 2023 week and about 39% below the five-year average for the week.
Born in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and raised in East Texas, John Worthen returned to his home state to attend college in 1998 and decided to make his life in The Natural State. Worthen is a 20-year veteran of the journalism industry and has covered just about every topic there is. He has a passion for writing and telling stories. He has worked as a beat reporter and bureau chief for a statewide newspaper and as managing editor of a regional newspaper in Arkansas. Additionally, Worthen has been a prolific freelance journalist for two decades, and has been published in several travel magazines and on travel websites.