Intermodal Spot Rates Hit Another High
The intermodal spot rate index increased 6.9% over prior week. Of the 115 lanes tracked in the weighted average index, 15.8% increased, 51.7% decreased and 32.5% went unchanged. The increases came primarily from SoCal, NorCal and Seattle lanes.
For the week of July 30, 2018, domestic intermodal spot rates were:
- Up 6.9% from prior week.
- Up 7.5% from 90 days ago.
- Up 46.9% from prior year.
The jump in the week-over-week rates is a result of constrained market surcharges added to already record high spot rates in key markets, but look out for further increases or changes in O/D pairs, as railroads continue to re-align their businesses. The latest change came yesterday when the UP announced it would cease the interline service on the 197 origin-destination pairs they share with CSX beginning September 17.
While the DAT continues to report declining spot rates, keep in mind truckload rates remain at all-time highs and this is a seasonal trend that will turn over the course of August.
Diesel Fuel Comments:
Moving onto the fuel side of the intermodal pricing equation, the EIA reported average diesel fuel price of $3.223 per gallon this week, which is a $0.003 decrease.
The diesel price per gallon is up $0.642 or 24.9% higher from the same period last year.
Oil prices are declining this week, with WTI and Brent trading today in the range of $66.70 and $72.00, respectively. During the most recent earnings calls oil production and infrastructure companies have been reporting a ramp up in capital spending to meet demand, but politicals is starting to cloud future demand, hence a big decline today in oil prices.
The EIA for diesel and oil prices current projection is diesel will average $3.14 a gallon for calendar year 2018.
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
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