Spot-freight demand has been disappointing through the first two weeks of December, bucking a trend of increased rates and activity around the holiday season, according to the latest reports from DAT Solutions.
While spot market rates for vans and flatbeds did see a slight increase in the first week of December, the second week lost most or all of the small gains. Spot van rates for the week ending in December 15 fell to $2.08 cents, a 6-cent drop from the first week and dead even with the final week of November. Flatbed rates fell by 1 cent to $2.42, still a few cents above the average from November.
Reefer rates slipped in both weeks of December, settling in a $2.42, down 4 cents from the previous week.
In addition to sliding rates, the load-to-truck ratio— a measurement of demand versus capacity— dipped for vans and flatbeds and was unchanged for reefers. The ratio for vans dipped to 5.2 loads per truck while the flatbed ratio moved down to 19.6 loads per truck. Reefer ratios remained at 6.3 loads per truck.