Trucking Industry Trends

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Expect rates to rise as Hurricane Florence relief begins

While the winds of Hurricane Florence have subsided, the effects of the hurricane will be felt for weeks and months to come. More than 30 people have died in storm-related incidents and several towns remain flooded. Some rivers have not yet crested, which could bring more damage. In North Carolina alone, more than 1,000 roads are closed and the city of Wilmington—a port town—remains cut off with no road access in or out of the city. (For… Read More

What happened to all the Texas freight?

In the first half of the year, the spot market in Texas was boiling over, with not nearly enough trucks to cover the growing demand for freight. In the past month, the market’s been pretty tepid.What happened?Pipeline capacity issues in West Texas are part of the explanation. Drilling in the Permian Basin around Midland, TX, has slowed. Demand also cooled out of Houston, the largest flatbed market in the… Read More

Lack of pipeline capacity slowing freight in West Texas

Pipeline capacity issues in West Texas have had a carryover impact into the freight marketplace. We have seen a slowing Houston market for flatbed and regional van markets like Dallas and Memphis, which send freight to Houston seem to be impacted by the slowdown in oil drilling as well. Houston market L-T ratios A slowdown in drilling has become apparent in the Permian Basin, centered around Midland, TX. The top lane supplying… Read More

DAT Freight Barometers: Expect contract rates to rise

In all three modes, the DAT® Trucking Freight Barometers are continuing to demonstrate three basic trends: Demand that exceeds capacity by a wide enough margin to drive spot and contract prices higher Seasonally weaker demand, as is normal during July and August. There is less freight to be moved. Have no fear. Demand for trucking will pick up again in September and continue to be… Read More

Best and worst states for outbound freight

If you’re looking for loads on the spot market, you’d do well to get yourself to Texas. For the first half of 2018, freight brokers posted more truck loads there than any other state in the country.It’s been a wide variety of freight, too. Texas was the top state for all three major trailer types: Dry van, refrigerated van ("reefer") and flatbed.Below are the top five and bottom five… Read More

Expect truckload market volatility to continue through the fall

To say that the first half of 2018 was "a period of both extreme volatility and unprecedented imbalance between capacity and demand for trucking services in North America" at first sounds like hyperbole. But if you ask anyone who lived through it, they'll probably tell you it's an understatement. That raises two basic questions: What created the environment of extreme volatility and unprecedented imbalance? And if the first six months… Read More

GDP growth is no surprise if you watch trucking trends

I woke up this morning to a news alert on my phone: U.S. GDP grew at 4.1% in the second quarter. I was not surprised.If you follow trucking trends, you probably weren't surprised either. In fact, you may even be an expert on the U.S. economy. I'm not saying you should give up your day job to become a… Read More

Demand still exceeds capacity for all trailer types: DAT Barometers

After repeated periods of record growth from January through June, the weekly DAT Dry Van and Reefer Barometers have pulled back slightly, and appear to be entering a more stabilizing trend. Meanwhile the weekly DAT Flatbed Barometer has begun to pull back slightly in the past two weeks, after setting one new record high after another through the month of June.… Read More

Top 10 Markets for Flatbed Loads in First Half of 2018

Flatbed markets have been scorching in 2018. And just like with dry van and reefer freight, flatbed rates have been setting records this year. Every week in DAT Trendlines, we report on the national load-to-truck ratios for each equipment. It's a simple enough calculation: Just take the number of load posts on DAT load boards, and divide that… Read More

Top 10 Markets for Reefer Loads in First Half of 2018

As noted in our rundown of the top 10 markets for van load posts this year, 2018 has been a year of records on the spot market. This past June saw the highest national reefer rate ever recorded in DAT Trendlines, our weekly report on national spot market pricing and capacity… Read More