Rate Trend of the Week

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Reefer Traffic Sizzles in Southern Produce Markets

Got reefers? It's time to move 'em on down to produce markets in the Southern states. Spring is finally here.Load-to-truck ratios show tightening capacity this week in produce markets in the band of states along the southern border of the U.S., from Florida all the way to California. The load-to-truck ratio is based on the number of loads posted divided by truck posts in the same market, and it is is a key indicator of demand versus… Read More

Why Did Rates Rise When Load-to-Truck Ratios Fell?

Usually, the trend in the load-to-truck ratio is strongly associated with a similar trend in freight rates. Last week, however, as the load-to-truck ratio declined, rates began to rise. My colleagues and I were left scratching our heads over that contradiction.Adding to our confusion, rates rose in a majority of the busiest lanes a full two weeks before the national average rates began to edge up.There are a few factors that… Read More

The Better Things Get, the Worse They Are

Those of us who have been in the trucking industry for a long time will understand and appreciate that title.I looked at some data on the number of loads processed in February and again on March 29, the last business day of the month. Overall, there was good news – van freight traffic is up 8.3%. Such a big increase should be enough to make things better everywhere, right?Not so fast. Take Florida for example, (including… Read More

January Freight Surge Defies Seasonal Norms

Rates are trending up on the spot market. This is a surprising move for January and February, typically the slowest months of the year. Van and flatbed rates are up, but reefer rates are declining as expected. Reefers seem to have hit bottom, though, as rates are stabilizing now; they will likely… Read More

Finding the Hot Spots

Where's the Action? Right now, you're either shaking your head and saying there's no action at all, or you are too busy answering the phone to even glance at this blog.It's normal to have regional variations in freight trends -- but this year there are transitions in play, so you may find yourself in a market that is suddenly deader than a doornail. On the upside, some formerly quiet freight backwaters are seeing a burst of… Read More

Dark Before the Dawn?

Van rates slipped 2.6% lower last week on the spot freight market. At the same time, financial markets continued to climb toward record heights. What do these conflicting signals mean?In transportation and logistics, we are primarily focused on the first quarter. Q1 is typically slow, with cold winter temperatures and poor road conditions… Read More