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Van Rates Could Get a Boost Out West
Owner Operator Trucking Rates
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Spot market activity often ramps up out West in the fall, but there’s added pressure this month, because of problems with ocean freight. Hanjin Shipping is the 7th biggest container carrier in the world, and it recently filed for bankruptcy. Right now Hanjin is struggling to find the money to bring its ships to port and unload them, and there’s a big ripple effect on the supply chain, including trucking. We’re already seeing a big spike in demand for trucks in Los Angeles, which includes the two busiest seaports in North America.
Darker-colored states have higher load-to-truck ratios, meaning that there’s less competition for van loads in those states.
Retailers are starting to shift inventory from West Coast distribution centers to other DCs out East. L.A. outbound rates are up, especially on eastbound lanes, and the City of Angels jumped up to number 2 in load posts (number 1 is Chicago).
On the top 100 van lanes, more had rates go up than down last week, but prices changes were generally small. Seattle rates have also been trending up, which is partly due to fall harvests in Washington State, but it could also be related to the disruption of ocean freight. There’s extra traffic out of Stockton, CA, too.
Rates below include fuel surcharges and are averages based on real transactions between carriers and brokers.
RISING LANE RATES
- Seattle to Salt Lake City added ▲13¢ to an average of $1.83/mile
- The backhaul lane from Portland, OR, to Stockton paid ▲14¢ better, averaging $1.42/mile
- The headhaul direction also paid better: Rates for Stockton to Portland were up to $2.29/mile
FALLING LANE RATES
There were fewer loads moving out of Columbus and Chicago last week, but rates were still strong. Prices slipped in the Northeast, though.
Two lanes out of Buffalo lost some recent gains:
- Buffalo to Charlotte fell ▼25¢ to $1.44/mile
- Buffalo to Chicago also dropped ▼10¢ to just $1.26/mile
The average rate on the lane from Allentown, PA, to Boston fell ▼10¢ to $3.08/mile. That rate might still look good, but loads are hard to come by once you get to Boston.