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Axle Monthly Update: June 2024

June 7, 2024

Will rates ripen before the end of produce?


Georgia Port Records Strongest Ever Month

On May 21st, The Georgia Ports Authority reported April as its busiest month ever for automobile shipments. The 44% increase in volume was a result of the closure of the Port of Baltimore, which can be credited to the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge on March 26th. The second-busiest U.S. port for autos, Brunswick, moved more than 80,000 vehicles and heavy machinery units across its docks last month.

The increase in volume is consistent with recent data, as the Brunswick port had its second-busiest month of record for autos and heavy machinery in March, which had mostly passed prior to the bridge collapse.

Auto shipments to Georgia have been booming since last year, when U.S. auto sales saw their biggest increase in a decade. That led to the Port of Brunswick handling a record 775,000 automobiles and heavy machinery units in calendar year 2023. This surge is certainly being felt in the dry van space as well as automotive loadings continue to impact loadings projections.


The total broker-posted rate increased just under 3 cents for the smallest gain in a Roadcheck week in at least a decade, except for 2020 when rates were basically flat week over week. Rates were more than 5% below the same 2023 week and more than 6% below the five-year average for the week. At this point, the forecast does not indicate evidence of a change in pace. According to DAT for the week following Memorial Day, the national average dry van linehaul rate increased by just over a penny per mile to $1.66/mile as shippers pushed more volume into the market at month-end. Compared to last year, linehaul rates are $0.03/mile lower on an 8% higher volume of loads moved in Week 22.

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