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SONAR Sightings: 2 SONAR features launch; China-US container rates drop further

The highlights from Monday’s SONAR reports are below. For more information on SONAR — the fastest freight-forecasting platform in the industry — or to request a demo, click here. Also, be sure to check out the latest SONAR update, TRAC — the freshest spot rate data in the industry.

Market Dashboard Plus+ and National Truckload Index Forecast released during F3.

In case you missed the hottest event in freight last week, Day 1 of FreightWaves’ F3: Future of Freight Festival included Peter Zeihan mapping the collapse of globalization and Manti Te’o opening up about his public struggle in 2013. FreightWaves SONAR also unveiled a new feature, Market Dashboard Plus+, which is revolutionizing the surface transportation industry by providing visibility into real-time spot and contract rates simultaneously.

Day 2 at F3 included Spencer Frazier, J.B. Hunt’s executive vice president of sales and marketing, addressing a crowd from the main stage on the disconnects in the supply chain, followed by another SONAR release, the National Truckload Index Forecast, a high-frequency forecasting tool designed to help industry professionals better prepare for future transportation costs.

Market Dashboard Plus+

The power tool designed for pricing managers, Market Dashboard Plus+ now allows users to compare multiple TRAC spot market and contract rates side by side — no more searching one by one.

So how does it work? Subscribers to Market Dashboard Plus+ only need to download a template from the upper right corner, opening the Numbers application, where users enter in ZIP codes for origin and destination to categorize as the lane ID, and lastly enter the mileage and equipment type.

Documents are then uploaded in the top right corner of Market Dashboard Plus+ to be registered and translated into the data set.

Market Dashboard Plus+

This new feature provides in-depth and up-to-date visibility to make the best decisions for transportation companies on either the shipper, carrier or brokerage side of the industry.

National Truckload Index Forecast

A 60-day forecast on the national average for spot rates, FreightWaves’ National Truckload Index Forecast will allow professionals on all sides of the transportation equation to gauge their operating costs and make meaningful decisions to adapt to the volatility of the current market.

When prices increase on the spot market, there is less available capacity in relation to demand but when prices decrease, it is an indication that capacity is becoming easier to book and service should improve with no upward pressure on long-term contract rates.


NTI as a point of reference

The National Truckload Index is a daily look at how spot rates in specific lanes hold up in comparison to the national average, giving carriers and brokers an idea of which lanes to gravitate toward or avoid.

NTI Daily

Market Watch for Nov. 7:

Ontario, California

Outbound truckload demand from Southern California finally levels out after a major drop as imports to the Port of Long Beach reach their lowest levels since 2019.

Truckload volumes leaving Ontario, California, fell 4.5% from Oct. 25 to 30 and then took a nose-dive the first week of November. The Outbound Tender Volume Index in Ontario dropped 66 points, or 15.5%, since Oct. 30 to 357.70 — its lowest point since April 2020.

Rejection rates have seen little change during the decrease in volumes. The Outbound Tender Reject Index in Ontario is only 35 basis points higher to 2% after hitting its lowest point since 2020 in late October.


The drop in truckload volume coincides with declining levels of imported container volumes to the Port of Los Angeles and, most notably, to the Port of Long Beach.

U.S. customs maritime import shipments dropped 26.3% on Friday in Los Angeles and are down 28.6% at the Port of Long Beach in the same time frame. However, spot rates per forty-foot container took a sharp increase when volume began to slump but have since fallen off a cliff.

The last couple of weeks of October rates were relatively stagnant and showing little signs of change, raising the question if spot rates had finally found a floor or were just gliding before taking another drop. After a sharp increase in spot rates from China to the U.S., it only took a few days before spot rates fell off a cliff again, creating new lows for the cycle.

The Freightos Baltic Daily Index clocked a $556.46 increase in spot rates from China to the West Coast of the U.S. last Tuesday before plunging $1,010.68 by Friday to $1,949.64. China to the East Coast, on the other hand, increased $1,657.38 on Tuesday before dropping $2,171.09 to $5,135.09 on Friday.


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Corey Smith

Corey is a staff writer for FreightWaves with experience in air, intermodal and parcel operations, as well as LTL and full truckload transportation management. He is a graduate of the University of Memphis, majoring in supply chain management, and enjoys basketball, cinema and traveling.