Intermodal Spot Rate Pricing Trendline Analysis - May 15 2018 Blog Feature
Rick LaGore

By: Rick LaGore on May 17th, 2018

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Intermodal Spot Rate Pricing Trendline Analysis - May 15 2018

Intermodal | diesel fuel price | truckload | intermodal spot rates | intermodal spot rate index trendlines

Weekly discussion and analysis on the trends in the intermodal and truckload spot market.

Intermodal & Diesel Yr-over-Yr Percentage Comparison-7

Domestic intermodal spot rates are:

  • Up 0.9% from prior week.
  • Up 21.8% from 90 days ago.
  • Up 53.3% from prior year.

Intermodal spot rates had a modest increase this week, but there is more to the story.   

  • SoCal outbound rates continue to climb. 
    • UNP announced last week it would not be offering new committed rates out of Los Angeles.  The announcement did not affect current business and renewals.  It also said spot rate capacity would be open, as capacity allowed, and if market conditions change new commitments could open up new commitments again.
  • Outbound NJ rates retreated roughly 14.5% this week.
  • Outbound Chicago rates increased a little over 7.0%.
  • Majority of outbound rates that had a destination of Seattle, Chicago, Florida or California decreased from prior week.

On the truckload side of 53' capacity, DAT reported a $0.03 or 1.4% decrease per mile this week with the current national dry van spot rate of $2.15 a mile.  The dry van national average spot rate is 29% higher than last year. 

Diesel fuel continues to put upward pressure on truckload intermodal rates, but so does available COFC capacity.  The latest AAR figures indicate TOFC is up 20.9% over prior year.

Diesel Fuel Comments: 

The EIA reported average diesel fuel price of $3.239 per gallon this week, which is a $0.068 increase from the prior week and the eighth consecutive week diesel prices have increased. 

The price per gallon is up $0.695 or 27.3% higher from the same period last year.    

Oil prices continue to remain elevated with WTI and Brent trading today in the range of $71.60 and $80.00, respectively.  Political instability remains in the headlines, but production and demand are certainly contributing factors in the upward pressure on oil prices.  

The EIA for diesel and oil prices increased its projection of the diesel fuel average for the year to be $3.12 in calendar year 2018.  

The full spreadsheet of the historical weekly price moves of diesel full can be found at

Graphs listed below include:

  • 53' Domestic Intermodal Price Index & Diesel Fuel Prices
  • Rolling 52 Year-over-Year Comparison - 53' Domestic Intermodal and Diesel Fuel Prices
  • Rolling 52 Year-over-Year % Change - 53' Domestic Intermodal and Diesel Fuel Prices
  • 53' Domestic Intermodal and Diesel Prices Quarter-Over-Quarter Comparison
 Intermodal & Diesel Prices-49

 Intermodal & Diesel Yr-over-Yr Comparison-49

Intermodal & Diesel Yr-over-Yr Percentage Comparison-6 

 Intermodal & Diesel Qtr-over-Qtr Comparison-45

For more on 53' domestic intermodaltruckload and managed transportation services, sign-up for our weekly blogs and visit the InTek Freight and Logistics website.

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About Rick LaGore

Rick is the co-founder and CEO of InTek Freight & Logistics, a company focused on being the place where companies come when faced with a logistics problem.

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