After August’s peak in truck volumes, capacity tightened dramatically in December – a good sign for the industry

TORONTO – On the heels of November’s increased load volumes and tightened truckload capacity, TransCore Link Logistics Canadian and cross-border loads showed exceptional volumes in December, the highest year-over-year increase in history for the month of December. Complementing these volumes was a favourable dip in truck volumes that resulted in a healthy truck-to-load ratio for Loadlink customers for the month.

Year over Year

Volumes demolished the previous year’s volumes, bolting 45 percent higher than December 2015—the highest year-over-year increase for the month of December on record. Also impressive, month-over-month volumes climbed 14 percent despite fewer shipping days, and the United States and Canadian Christmas holidays. 

The overall performance of load volumes in 2016 was the reverse of 2015. In 2015, load volumes started on a high and ended on a low. In 2016, loads began the year moderately low with a typical seasonal dip in the summer months followed by a rise in the third quarter. December’s closing volumes puts December 2016 in second place with the highest load volumes on record for the month of December.

Quarter over Quarter

Fourth quarter load volumes were higher by 25 percent compared to the fourth quarter volumes of 2015, and were up eight percent compared to the third quarter of 2016.

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Equipment Capacity

Capacity tightened nicely in December; the month saw the lowest amount of trucks posted in 21 months. Posted equipment trended with historic higher-than-average postings for the year compared to years prior. Posted equipment was lower by 19 percent month-over-month and by 14 percent year-over-year.

With an historic peek in truck postings in August, followed by a significant drop in September, and a subsequent drop in December, this downward trend over the last four months helped to tighten capacity at year’s end—a trend that was last seen in early 2015.

Truck-to-load Ratio

The 12-month truck-to-load ratio was stuck at an average of three trucks for every available load for the better part of the year. December was the first time this ratio fell below this average, improving dramatically to 2.26 trucks for every one available load from 3.18 in November. Year-over-year, this ratio also improved from 3.73 in December 2015.

TransCore’s Canadian Freight Index accurately measures trends in the truckload freight spot market. The components of the Freight Index are comprised from roughly 5,500 of Canada’s trucking companies and freight brokers; this data includes all domestic, cross-border and interstate data submitted by Loadlink customers.

Truckload spot rates in specific areas can be accessed from TransCore’s Rate Index truckload rating tool, and real-time and historical data on total truck and load volumes, as well as ratios in specific areas can be accessed from TransCore’s Posting Index.

About TransCore Link Logistics

Looking for a better way to match available freight loads with trucks, TransCore Link Logistics in 1990 developed Loadlink, a load board connecting brokers, carriers, owner operators and private fleets in Canada to a real-time database of 15 million loads, shipments and trucks – the largest in the industry. The monthly Canadian Freight Index now defines the freight movement spot market. The company also provides its customers with dispatch solutions, ACE/ACI eManifest, Posting Index, Rate Index, credit solutions, factoring, online transportation job boards, mileage software and more.

TransCore Link Logistics is a unit of Roper Technologies, a constituent of the S&P 500, Fortune 1000, and the Russell 1000 indices. Roper designs and develops software (both software-as-a-service and licensed), and engineered products and solutions for healthcare, transportation, food, energy, water, education and academic research markets worldwide. Additional information about Roper is available on the company's website at www.ropertech.com.

More information on TransCore Link Logistics can be found at www.transcore.ca, @loadlink on Twitter, on YouTube, on Facebook and on LinkedIn.