Average van and reefer spot rates are up nationwide

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | 12/2/2015

Two leading load boards agreed on the movement of average spot market rates for van, reefer and flatbed freight last week. Spot rates are up for van and reefer freight, while flatbed loads are showing no signs of improvement.

Van rates were up 12 cents to $1.86 per mile, according to Truckstop.com. DAT Solutions van rates went up a penny to $1.71, creating a significant gap between the two load boards. Two weeks ago, DAT and Truckstop.com indicated the same van rates.

Reefer rates at Truckstop.com also increased by 12 cents to $2.13. Over at DAT, reefer rates were up a penny to $1.94, establishing another large discrepancy between the two load boards. Reefer rates between Truckstop.com and DAT were just 1 cent apart two weeks ago.

Flatbed rates went down 2 cents from the previous week to $1.85, according to Truckstop.com. DAT is reporting unchanged rates for flatbed rates at $1.92, leaving a 7-cent gap. Last week, 5 cents separated Truckstop.com’s flatbed rates from DAT’s.

Across all modes, Truckstop.com shows that load availability decreased by 31.4 percent, and truck supply went down by 35.1 percent in comparison to the previous week. According to DAT, load-to-truck ratios were up for two of three modes, with reefer freight experiencing the only decrease.

Truckstop.com has placed the Market Demand Index (MDI) at 10.9, a 0.4-point increase from the previous week. The MDI is a comparison of available loads to available trucks posted on the load board. The higher the MDI, the better the chances that the power rests with the carriers and vice versa; currently, 10 represents an even market. This time last year, the MDI was 18.1, or 39.7 percent higher than today.

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