While great news for flatbed, and we have seen the rates increase, construction starts helps all sectors of trucking.
Most in trucking are watching housing starts to see how open deck rates are going to change. But construction as a whole impacts the market, not just houses. And this article does a good job explaining that. What is interesting when we look at index data is they always seem to be looking back. But based on seasonality that can help predict what is going to be happening going forward.
With commercial construction in full swing, we can feel comfortable that this will stay strong into the winter months, indicating a better than normal winter flatbed market. And we can also feel comfortable with these numbers because we have seen the rates and capacity for flatbed move in a positive direction during the period that it reports.
In terms of dry van, not all construction supplies moves via flatbed. So watching indexes that are normally more geared towards flats is a good habit to get into.