Freight Rates Enjoy Modest Increase in December 2021
With the end of the year and the power of the holiday season, the trucking industry has been able to enjoy the highest per-mile rates of the year, if not in recorded history. DAT Freight & Analytics has the numbers.
By the Numbers
- Dry van hauling increased the most, jumping eight cents to a round $3 per mile.
- Flatbed hauling increased two cents per mile to $3.07.
- Reefer hauling increased two cents as well, to $3.46.
- The average increased four cents for each mile to around $3.18.
There are numerous reasons as to why the rates for all three forms of freight are at their highest since DAT has started tracking them. The easy explanation for all of this might appear to be inflation, but even in recent times of 5% annual inflation, prices have increased over 20% since January. No, inflation is only part of the puzzle.
We are living in unprecedented times, dubbed by many as the Great Resignation. People in industries the world over, not just trucking, are leaving their jobs in pursuit of greener pastures.
In an industry that is already believed to be suffering a shortage, companies are having to pay a premium to get their goods shipped, and in a world where resigning workers means supply chain shortages, consumers are having to pay more for all goods, ranging from commonalities such as toilet paper to exotic imports such as Cambozola cheese. Indeed, it was not very long ago that news of port backlogs was at the forefront of the news.
All of these various events add up, culminating in higher prices for goods: not just for the product itself, but the cost to ship it due to the rising cost of diesel, trucks, and truck parts.
Can it Last?
The question on the back of everyone’s mind is how long these increased rates are going to sustain. If rates continued to increase by two cents every month, that would be almost a quarter per year. Surely they cannot increase to five, seven, even ten dollars per mile by the end of 2030? We will keep you posted as news develops regarding freight rates within the United States. Until then, enjoy the rising rates while they are still here!
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