An unseasonally strong January, combined with pent-up demand for freight services following the Christmas and New Year holidays and some severe weather in major markets, may have contributed to a 31-percent bounce in truckload freight postings in the week ending January 15 on TransCore's Load Boards, compared to the previous week. The surge in truckload availability was led by flatbed freight, which increased by 40 percent on the spot freight market, week over week.
The increased activity followed two consecutive weeks of post-holiday declines in truckload posts, and was accompanied by a 26-percent increase in truck equipment posts. A slowdown in freight postings is not unusual in the winter months, but truck posts usually increase only when load posts decline. Last week and the week before, both demand and capacity increased in tandem.
Looking back over the most recent four-week period, it appears that the increased activity offset the typical slowdown that occurs during holiday weeks, including Christmas and New Year's Day, when transportation companies are closed. The first week in January saw major East Coast markets locked in by severe weather, delaying the typical post-holiday rebound until the week of January 8 through 15. The subsequent surge in activity returned the volume of both spot market freight load and truck postings to their pre-holiday levels.
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