Rate Trend of the Week: Reefer rates stable in Dallas, heat up in Atlanta

Reefer freight rates in three major markets sounded like the tale of the three bears this week: Atlanta was hot, Philly was cold and Dallas was just right.

Overall, this week’s refrigerated freight movements show a decline of 10%, due to the Thanksgiving holiday, but linehaul rates still managed to rise by 1.1% after adjustment for changes in the price of fuel. Most markets were mixed, with relatively small changes. As an example, Dallas had 3 major lanes showing rate increases, 3 lanes with decreases and one lane was neutral.

Rates are based on a 30-day rolling average of broker rate agreements for thousands of lane rates per day. The rates quoted below are primarily “line haul,” or the rate per mile for reefers in that market, before the addition of fees and surcharges. For reference, the week’s average fuel surcharge is estimated at $0.36 per mile for reefers this week, based on an average price of $3.16 per gallon for diesel.

Here is a sample of the biggest week-over-week changes, as reported in TransCore’s Truckload Rate Index for Spot Market Rates:

Market leader for increasing rates: Atlanta, GA

  • Atlanta to Philadelphia: up by $0.18/mile
  • Atlanta to Charlotte: up $0.24/mile

Market leader for decreasing rates: Philadelphia, PA (again!)

  • Philadelphia to Columbus: down by $0.09/mile

Biggest increases:

  • Charlotte to Atlanta: up by $0.31, to $2.24 for linehaul ($650.00 pay-to-truck, all-in)*
  • Los Angeles to Chicago: up by $0.26 (to $1.79)
  • Columbus to Chicago: up by $0.19 (to $1.47)

Biggest declines:

  • Boston to Philadelphia: down by $0.24 (to $1.50 for linehaul)
  • Chicago to Minneapolis: down by $0.10 (to $1.25)
  • Philadelphia to Columbus: down by $0.09 (to $1.30)

*You are welcome to contact me for explanation of terminology: [email protected]

For each week’s Rate Trend, we analyze changes in freight movement and rates on the spot market in 48 top lanes across the U.S. These routes serve major markets, including Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles and Philadelphia. We also look at secondary markets such as Columbus, Denver and Memphis.

To find rates for your favorite lanes and equipment every day, subscribe to Truckload Rate Index Combo. You’ll get spot market pricing from broker rate agreements – not bids – alongside the longer-term contract rates derived from thousands of actual freight bills, plus information about fuel surcharges, accessorial charges and rate calculators.