Canadian freight costs rise for 10th straight month

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The latest Canadian General Freight Index released Wednesday, Feb. 29, indicates that the cost of ground transportation for Canadian shippers increased 1.1 percent in December 2011 when compared with November 2011 results. After the 10th consecutive monthly increase, the CGFI is now 8.1 percent above the December 2010 result.

The Base Rate Index, which excludes the impact of accessorial charges assessed by carriers, remained essentially the same in December 2011 versus November 2011. Since December 2010, base rates reported by the CGFI have risen only .8 percent.

Increasing accessorial charges, including fuel surcharges, are the primary driver of increasing freight costs for Canadian shippers, the index indicates. In December 2011, the average accessorial charges assessed by carriers increased to 27.8 percent of base rates, up from 26.7 percent in November 2011 and 24.3 percent in October 2011.

“During the winter months, it is not uncommon to see increases in non-fuel accessory charges as a result of seasonal shipping and winter conditions,” says Doug Payne, president and chief operating officer of Nulogx, which oversees the index. “While we expect these to decline in the spring, we are continuing to monitor the impact rising fuel prices has on shipping costs.”