Finally, the FreightWaves SONAR Outbound Tender Rejection Index (OTRI) has decided to stop sliding and started to climb. With reports of $0.50 freight starting to show up in the media, somebody had to finally start saying “NO” to the cheap freight. How can someone accept these loads paying below poverty rates? How much is the fuel surcharge on a $0.50 per mile rate?
The OTRI had been sliding ever since March 23, 2021 (is this 2022?), from its high of 28.29%. After a few peaks and troughs, it began a steady dive downward. Now the bottom has hopefully been hit at the current 7.68%, which is a bit better than the record bottom of 2.59% that was set on April 26, 2020. That was one of the factors that led to the “Trucker Protest of 2020,” a “sit-in” where truckers parked their rigs on Pennsylvania Avenue (with full permission from the government, of course.)
For those wondering if this is the worst the freight market has been, we’re not quite there yet. This week the SONAR Outbound Tender Volume Index (OTVI), or the freight leaving the distribution centers headed to a shelf near you, reached 12691.46. That’s far above the 6019.84 bottom of December 23, 2018. So there is still plenty of freight to move, and more on the way if stores can find a way to unload the warehouses they claim are full.
The National Truckload Linehaul Index drops below $2.00 per mile
Looks like the National Truckload Index, Business Day Linehaul (NTIBL, excluding fuel) went below $2.00 per mile on June 13. Those hoping for a bottom to get called will have to hold out a bit longer. The NTIBL is currently at $1.96, dropping $0.04 since the previous week. The National Truckload Index, Business Day (NTIB, which is inclusive of fuel) also sank $0.04, hitting $2.86.
For those hoping fuel would start falling, well not quite yet. The National Truckstop Actual Diesel Price (DTS.USA) hit $5.849, up nearly $0.05 from last week. The Diesel Rack Price (ULSDR.USA) was fairly unchanged from last week, settling at $4.722.
But prayers are hopefully about to be answered if the rumored federal fuel tax holiday makes it through the Oval Office. But one can only wonder if it will just get added on somewhere else.