Truckload and intermodal rates see strong gains in October, according to Cass and Broughton report

Pricing for both truckload and intermodal freight movements were again strong in October, according to data in the most recent editions of the Truckload Linehaul Index and Intermodal Index from Cass Information Systems and Broughton Capital.

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Pricing for both truckload and intermodal freight movements were again strong in October, according to data in the most recent editions of the Truckload Linehaul Index and Intermodal Index from  and .

This pricing data is part of the Cass Truckload Linehaul Index and the Cass Intermodal Linehaul Index, which were both created in late 2011. The indices are based on actual freight invoices paid on behalf of Cass clients, which accounts for more than $23 billion annually and uses 2005 as its base month.

Truckload rates, which measure linehaul rates, increased 8.2% annually to 143.4 in October, which represents an all-time high on a nominal basis, according to the report.

“We expect more nominal record highs in the coming months, with slightly lower percentage increases as comparisons grow increasingly tough through February," Broughton wrote in the report. "Our realized contract pricing forecast for 2018 of 6% to 12% is essentially ‘in the books.’ We believe that this is the strongest normalized percentage level of truckload pricing achieved since deregulation (‘normalized’ meaning except for extreme periods of recovery from recession).”

On the intermodal side, the report stated that total intermodal pricing, which is comprised of all-in intermodal costs, saw a 10.9% annual gain on a nominal basis in October to 147.3 for a new all-time high, topping the previous record of 143.2, which was set in March 2018.

This tally marks the 25th consecutive month of increases, with the three-month moving average at 10.8%.  

“Tight truckload capacity and higher diesel prices continue to create incremental demand and pricing power for domestic intermodal," wrote Broughton. "Although it had been higher until recently, we continue to foresee oil trading in the $45 to $65 range and diesel in the $2.50 to $3.25 range.”


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