Intermodal Spot Rate Pricing Trendline Analysis - Nov 27 2018
Weekly discussion and analysis on the trends in the intermodal and truckload spot market.
The InTek intermodal spot rate index decreased -2.0% over prior week.
For the week of November 27, 2018, domestic intermodal spot rate index:
- Down -2.0% from prior week
- Down -6.2% from 90 days ago.
- Up 19.4% from prior year.
Lane Stats: 4.4% increased, 56.1% decreased and 39.5% went unchanged.
The intermodal spot market continues to weaken from its October 1, 2018 high. No one market jumped out as a leader in the price reductions this week, but instead, reductions were similar across all lanes. Still expecting to see a slight jump in spot rates before the year is in the books because of the tariff rush to import products and ecommerce related volume, although hope that is not the case so intermodal has a chance to fall more in-line with year-over-year increases seen in the truckload spot market.
Comparison of Truckload to Intermodal Spot Rate
The national truckload spot rate, as reported by DAT, decreased another $0.01 a mile this week. DAT reported the national truckload spot rate was $2.07 a mile. Truckload spot rates are up 3.5% from prior year.
The percentage spread between the year-over-year truckload and intermodal cost per mile decreased again this week coming in at a 9.6-point spread. While the spread continues to tighten, there is still more room to go before we begin to see shippers look to intermodal before truckload options on the basis of cost. We are projecting it will take another 7% to 12% decrease in intermodal spot pricing cost per mile, while truckload spot rates hold, before we see this action in the market.
Diesel Fuel Comments:
The EIA reported average diesel fuel price of $3.261 per gallon this week, which is a $0.035 decrease over prior week. This is the sixth consecutive week of a decrease.
The diesel price per gallon is up $0.335 or 11.4% higher from the same period last year.
Oil prices continue to weaken, with today's WTI and Brent closing at $51.65 and $60.37, respectively.
The story is not changing here ... slowing world economies, trade & tariff concerns, stronger dollar, Iran sanctions were softened and OPEC and non-OPEC nations continue to produce at record levels.
The EIA's most current diesel price projection for diesel is $3.19 a gallon for calendar year 2018 and $3.21 a gallon for 2019.
The full spreadsheet of the historical weekly price moves of diesel full can be found at https://www.eia.gov/petroleum/gasdiesel/.
Graphs listed below include:
- 53' Domestic Intermodal Price Index & Diesel Fuel Prices
- Variance to January 1, 2013 Baseline
- 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