Reefer, van, flatbed all see rate increases in March

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Per-mile rates on the spot market rose in all three segments — flatbed, reefer and dry van — in March, with each ticking up roughly a nickel, according to’s monthly rate data, released last week.

That’s the first across-the-board rate increase since June 2014 and at least a temporary bright spot in an otherwise rocky 8-month period, with gross rates largely trending downward in that time period and gains built up prior erased.

However, fuel prices likely are to blame for the downward trend, and linehaul rates — the base rate — have still be trending upward.

Van rates saw the largest month-to-month increase, according to Truckstop’s data, rising 7 cents to $1.93 a mile. Van rates fell below the $2 mark in January — the first time since November 2013 — and have stayed there since.

Reefer rates, the highest of the three, rose 6 cents to $2.16 a mile.

Flatbed rates climbed 4 cents to $2.04.