As the nation’s largest payer of freight bills, Cass manages $25 billion annually in freight spend, enabling us to compile meaningful data that serves as an indicator of transportation industry trends. The Cass Intermodal Price Index® is a measure of market fluctuations in U.S. domestic intermodal costs. Cass partners with securities analyst firm Broughton Capital LLC, who provides the analysis we offer each month.
Total intermodal pricing (all-in intermodal costs) continued its uphill run, rising 8.6% YoY in December. On a nominal basis, the index rose to 145.8, still just slightly below the all-time record high of 147.3 established in October. December marked the 27th consecutive month of increases and brought the three-month (or fourth quarter) YoY moving average to 10.0%. "Tight truckload capacity and higher diesel prices were creating incremental demand and pricing power for domestic intermodal throughout much of 2018," stated Donald Broughton, analyst and commentator for the Cass indexes. "However, with the recent decline in WTI crude from over $70 a barrel to under $50 a barrel, we are now expecting the price of fuel’s positive influence on the demand and pricing power for intermodal services to decrease in coming months."
The Cass Intermodal Price Index is an accurate, timely indicator of market fluctuations in per-mile U.S. domestic intermodal costs. The index includes all costs associated with the move (linehaul, fuel and accessorials). It is based on costs as of January 2005 and uses a base value of 100.
Data within this unique index is derived from actual freight invoices paid on behalf of Cass’ clients.