Background: DAT revamps key trucking industry report

The DAT North American Freight Index is widely recognized as a bellwether for trucking industry trends. After more than 10 years of monthly publication, DAT has revamped its Freight Index to provide an even more precise, timely view of volume and pricing trends in truckload freight.

Beginning with the February 2019 report, the DAT Freight Index will publish statistics reflecting truckload freight that was hauled during the month.

The report sheds new light on truck freight indicators in both the contract and spot market segments, captures direct interactions between shippers and for-hire carriers and transactions arranged by third-party logistics (3PL) companies.

What you can learn from the DAT Freight Index

Freight transportation volume and pricing trends are essential business intelligence for companies that provide or purchase transportation. DAT is widely recognized as the leading source of comprehensive rates database and tools for supply chain managers and their transportation service providers.

Analysts also monitor the transportation sector closely for actionable information about the health of the U.S. economy and rely on the freight industry as an advance indicator of large-scale economic trends. Nothing happens in the manufacturing, construction, or consumer sectors until physical goods are delivered. Thus, when freight changes, so do the numbers in all the sectors selling or receiving it.

What’s new in the DAT Freight Index

  • All data is derived from DAT RateView and its database of over $60 billion in annual freight payments, provided by more than 1,000 rate contributors.
  • Monthly volumes are based on approximately 3 million loads with pickup dates during the month. Previous versions of the DAT Freight Index were based on load posting data in DAT load boards.
  • Contract rates and volumes complement the spot market data, highlighting relationships between the two sets of trends
  • Average rates per mile by equipment type, for both the contract and spot markets. Rates are based on over-the-road moves of 250 miles or more and include fuel surcharges.