Spot market volume drops nearly a third from December 2017

DAT Freight Index numbers indicate truckload freight volumes slipped 27% in December 2018 against last year’s numbers. Load availability has trended downward since August as capacity loosened and trucks were more available. Despite the downturn, volume increased 7% overall for the year.

Flatbed rates remained stable month over month, but dry van and refrigerated (“reefer”) rates fell slightly, due to declining fuel surcharges. Compared to 2017, flatbed rates rose, but vans and reefers lost momentum.

According to DAT Market Analyst Peggy Dorf, a surge in e-commerce freight did not bolster spot market numbers this year as expected. ”Contract carriers handled a bigger share of the seasonal loads, taking advantage of new equipment and improved driver retention,” she added.

About DAT Freight Index

The DAT Freight Index reflects load posting volumes on DAT load board networks. A rating of 100 represents average monthly volumes in the year 2000. Rates are averaged by equipment type, based on $57 billion of actual transactions recorded in DAT RateView. Rate-per-mile figures include fuel surcharges. Find a full spectrum of industry trends and analysis at DAT Trendlines.

Freight availability slipped 6.3 percent on the spot market in December, month over month, according to truckload freight marketplace operator DAT Solutions.

Spot truckload freight rates dipped for van and refrigerated freight in December, but flatbed rates held steady, according to DAT Solutions, which maintains a rates database of $57 billion in annual market transactions.