Weekly Freight Roundup: Prepping for The Year of the Pig

In the first full week of the new year, volumes across the country are gaining traction, with national volume up 69% since the start of the year. It typically takes a week for volume to come back into the network after the holidays, and it picks up steam well into January.

It should come as no surprise that Los Angeles and Ontario, California are also driving the uptick in volume. They lead the nation with daily increases over the past week — often reaching up to 18% — resulting in a surge of over 87% since the beginning of the year. When we zoom out and look at the nation’s head hauls (the markets that are typically seen as desirable locations to position equipment), the Los Angeles market is highlighted as one of the strongest this week.

The rising freight volume this time of year is typical as we approach Chinese New Year.

Also known as Lunar New Year or Spring Festival, the Year of the Pig will officially start on February 5, 2019. Factories, carriers, and ports across China will close for up to three weeks. While the public holiday is officially one week long, many factories will shutter operations a week before and after to give workers a chance to travel home and then back again. This means there will be higher freight volume entering the ports (mostly on the West Coast) now through the first week of February before drying up.

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Damien Hutchins
Damien Hutchins is Senior Manager of Convoy's brokerage team, when he's not writing on the state of the freight market. He has held previous roles at tech startups in various industries over the past 15 years and focuses now on logistics and trucking from his hometown of Seattle. In his free time Damien can be found exploring in the Cascade Mountains, or taking long weekend road trips on his adventure motorcycle.