Spot market rates dipped a penny for flatbeds last week for a national average of $2.03 per mile. That was down 4 cents from Overdrive‘s last, late-August flatbed-specific update. Rates were up in some markets, however, such as Houston, and stabilized in other where they’d been falling, such as Los Angeles. Atlanta and Pittsburgh both saw declines.
The demand trends showed flatbed load availability up 1.2 percent. However, that volume boost was offset by a 1.1 percent uptick in posted-truck capacity for a national average load-to-truck ratio essentially unchanged frmm the previous week and our prior flatbed update at 10.3 loads per truck on DAT Load Boards.
Roundtrip from Houston to Oklahoma City — if you can make the 900-mile run in two days, including load and unload times — you can make about $850 per day based on average rates, or $1.93 per mile for all loaded miles. That’s not bad, but if you use up too many hours waiting at the dock or on the road outbound, your roundtrip could eat up the better part of three days.
Adding a leg on the return trip with a re-positioning load from Oklahoma City to San Antonio, paying an average $2.24 per loaded mile, then from San Antonio to Houston at $2.13 a mile, would add $770 to total roundtrip revenue. Bonus: you’ll get better utilization of your equipment and your time on that third day.
Explore the details below.