Holiday demand push spot truck rates higher

Dry van spot rates were above $2 per mile in the Southeast, where they climbed to a $2.06 per mile on average; in the Midwest, at $2.35 per mile; and the West, at $2.48 per mile.

Congestion at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach continued to drive spot truck rates higher for freight moving inland, with LA-Denver rates rising 35 cents to $3.35 per mile.

Spot rates from Southern California weren’t the only prices affected: The average van rate from Seattle rose 28 cents per mile last week, while rates from L.A. climbed 10 cents.

Not surprisingly, Buffalo was the costliest trucking market in the Northeast, following a massive storm that dumped seven feet of snow on the Western New York city.

However, rates from Buffalo dropped 4 cents to $2.19 per mile as local businesses were closed in the aftermath of the storm.

Spot van rates from Columbus, Ohio to Buffalo dropped 38 cents thanks to the storm, but that lane was the highest priced in the Midwest at $3.25 per mile, according to DAT.

Demand for dry van tractor-trailers on the spot market increased 14 percent, a sign that higher pre-Thanksgiving demand from retailers is spilling over into the spot market.

DAT load-to-truck ratios were above 5.5 in Nevada and Arizona, both states with logistics centers receiving goods from congested West Coast ports for redistribution inland.

Load-to-truck ratios were above 5.5 as well in states around the Great Lakes hit by last week’s winter storms, including New York, Ohio and Wisconsin, according to DAT.