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DAT releases 2023 Freight Focus report

After a challenging two years, truckload freight professionals are taking a measured, data-driven approach to 2023

DENVER, January 05, 2023--(BUSINESS WIRE)--From new consumer buying patterns to dramatically higher costs for fuel and labor, truckload freight professionals faced fresh challenges in 2022 that have led to a more measured, data-driven approach to 2023, according to a new annual report published by DAT Freight & Analytics.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here:

DAT has released the 2023 Freight Focus report (Graphic: Business Wire)

DAT’s 2023 Freight Focus report outlines the issues that will drive transportation strategies and decisions in the year ahead.

"COVID-19 didn’t introduce new problems in transportation. Instead, it shined a bright spotlight on existing ones. Now is the time to fortify supply chains and build a more dynamic and proactive way of navigating this volatile marketplace," said DAT President and CEO Claude Pumilia.

As economic conditions evolve and patterns emerge from DAT’s $137 billion in annual truckload freight transaction data, here are the key themes for 2023:

  • Supply chain networks are more balanced as shipping patterns stabilize and adjust to higher transportation costs. With shippers prioritizing the "in full" part of the On Time-In Full (OTIF) equation, fewer truckloads are needed to move even the same amount of consumer spending as during the height of the pandemic.

  • With thinner margins in 2023, carriers need to maximize utilization. That means reducing empty miles, emphasizing fuel economy, and coordinating with shippers and brokers to reduce dwell times.

  • The next freight cycle is around the corner. Spot truckload rates and volumes declined throughout 2022 while the gap between national average spot and contract van rates steadily increased until December when the spread began to close. DAT iQ forecasting models point to spot rates hitting bottom in Q1 2023, with the entire truckload market entering into the next cycle of increased demand in Q2.

  • Supply chain data providers that entered the market within the last several years now have a track record. Shippers, brokers and carriers can more easily distinguish data services that deliver reliable pricing benchmarks and forecasts; are an independent source of data; understand the dynamics of trucking and logistics; and are in the market for the long haul.

"Above all, finding a balance between cost control and flexibility will remain a focal point for businesses in 2023," Pumilia said. "Analytics from trusted sources can go a long way toward providing transparency in negotiations, achieving savings and maintaining good relationships among transportation partners."

DAT’s 2023 Freight Focus report also outlines regulatory issues, top freight markets and keys to success for transportation decision-makers in 2023. It is free and available to download at

About DAT Freight & Analytics

DAT Freight & Analytics operates the largest truckload freight marketplace in North America. Transportation brokers, motor carriers, news organizations and industry analysts rely on DAT for market trends and data insights based on 500 million freight matches and a database of $137 billion in annual market transactions.

Founded in 1978, DAT is a wholly owned subsidiary of Roper Technologies (NYSE:ROP), a diversified technology company and constituent of the S&P 500 and Fortune 500 indices.

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Annabel Reeves
Corporate Communications, DAT Freight & Analytics; 503-501-0143

Stephen Petit
SiefkesPetit Communications; 425-443-8976