The spot truckload market finished August on the rise as the number of available loads jumped 8.4% during the week ending Sept. 3, according to DAT Solutions, which operates the DAT network of load boards.
The national average van rate gained 6 cents, the reefer rate added 3 cents, and the flatbed rate picked up a penny after a mostly lackluster month.
Load-to-truck ratios got a healthy boost, an indication that the higher rates may outlast end-of-month and pre-holiday pressure.
DRY VAN TRENDS
Van load posts increased 13% and truck posts fell 2% for a 3.2 load-to-truck ratio, the highest ratio since July. The spike in freight volume pushed the national average van rate to $1.66/mile, a 6-cent increase compared to the previous week.
In the Midwest, a 4% increase in freight volume sparked an 8-cent-per-mile jump to $1.99/mile on outbound lanes from Chicago. Rates out of Columbus averaged $1.90/mile, up 6 cents.
Van volumes and rates were strong in the Southeast: Charlotte gained 6 cents to $1.94/mile, Atlanta was up 4 cents to $1.87/mile, and Memphis added 4 cents to $1.86/mile.
Other top-paying markets by region:
- West: Los Angeles, $2.02/mile (up 2 cents)
- South Central: Houston, $1.50/mile (up 3 cents)
- Northeast: Allentown, Pa., $2.09/mile (up 10 cents)
The number of reefer load posts increased 11% last week while capacity declined 2%. That boosted the reefer load-to-truck ratio 14% to 6.6 loads per truck. The national average reefer rate gained 3 cents to $1.92/mile including a 1-cent increase in the fuel surcharge.
In California, average outbound rates were generally strong including a 5-cent jump in the rate from Los Angeles ($2.46/mile). Idaho potato harvests led to higher volumes out of Twin Falls but outbound rates slipped leading up to the Labor Day weekend.
Several key reefer-freight lanes remained strong:
- Atlanta-Lakeland, Fla.: $2.84/mile, up 6 cents
- Elizabeth, N.J.-Boston: $3.55/mile, down 3 cents
- Chicago outbound: $2.35/mile, up 14¢
The number of flatbed load posts was steady while truck posts increased 4%. That pushed the load-to-truck ratio up 4% to 10.1 loads per truck. The national average flatbed rate was up a penny (due to the fuel surcharge) at $1.91/mile.
Rates are derived from DAT RateView, which provides real-time reports on prevailing spot market and contract rates, as well as historical rate and capacity trends. All reported rates include fuel surcharges.
Get the latest rate trends at DAT.com