Market Overview

DAT Freight Index: Spot Market Truckload Volume Sets Record in March, Driven by Demand for Flatbeds

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PORTLAND, Ore., April 12, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Spot truckload freight availability rebounded in March, to set a new 20-year record for the DAT North American Freight Index. The 38 percent increase in volume, year over year, was due largely to extraordinary demand for flatbed equipment to move industrial cargo for energy and construction.

DAT Freight Index - March 2018
Spot market truckload freight availability set a 20-year record in March, driven by demand for flatbed equipment, according to the DAT North American Freight Index. National average freight rates for all equipment types rose by more than 50 cents per mile, compared to March 2017.



DAT Spot Market Rates 2014-2018
The average rate to move freight via flatbed truck rose 16 cents month-over-month to a record $2.53 per mile, including fuel. Van rates rose 3 cents, and refrigerated van rates declined 1 cent, compared to February.



The Freight Index, a monthly measure of demand for spot market freight, is published by DAT Solutions, which operates North America's largest load board marketplace.

Flatbed freight rates also set a record in March, at $2.53 per mile, including fuel. Flatbeds got a 16-cent increase month over month, and were paid a full 50 cents more than the average for March 2017.

Van rates rose 3 cents compared to February, and 52 cents year over year. Rates for refrigerated ("reefer") cargo were down 1 cent at $2.40 per mile month over month, but reefer rates rose 53 cents compared to March 2017.

Rates continued to rise sharply through the first week in April, which is not typical after the close of a fiscal quarter. Van rates are on track to exceed their previous record high of $2.24 per mile, achieved in January, and flatbed rates continue to reach new heights, as well. Reefer rates are lagging, however, because spring produce harvests have not reached their peak.

"Economic growth, particularly in the energy sector, supports heightened demand for truckload transportation, and capacity is not keeping up with that demand," said DAT industry analyst Mark Montague. "Unless something changes, we can expect rates to continue rising at least until the end of June."

Established in 1978, DAT operates a network of load boards serving intermediaries and carriers across North America. For more than a decade DAT has published its Freight Index, which is representative of the dynamic spot market.

Referenced rates are the averages, by equipment type, based on $45 billion of actual transactions, as recorded in DAT RateView. Reference rates per mile include fuel surcharges, but not accessorials or other fees. The DAT Freight Index reflects load posting volume on the DAT network of load boards, and 100 on the Index represents the average monthly volume in the year 2000. Additional trends and analysis are available at DAT Trendlines.

About DAT Solutions

DAT operates the largest truckload freight marketplace in North America. Transportation brokers, carriers, news organizations and industry analysts rely on DAT for market trends and data insights derived from 179 million freight matches in 2017, and a database of $45 billion of market transactions. Related services include a comprehensive directory of companies with business history, credit, safety, insurance and company reviews; broker transportation management software; authority, fuel tax, mileage, vehicle licensing, and registration services; and carrier onboarding.

Founded in 1978, DAT Solutions LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Roper Technologies (NYSE:ROP), a diversified technology company and constituent of the S&P 500, Fortune 1000, and Russell 1000 indices. DAT.com

Contact:

Eileen Hart
Vice President, Marketing & Corporate Communications
PR@dat.com | 503-672-5132

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