August 16, 2017 3:30 PM, EDT

Old Dominion to Raise Rates 3.5% on Sept. 1

Could Prompt Other LTLs to Follow ODFL's Increase

Old Dominion Freight Line Inc. will raise rates on Sept. 1, 2017, but at a lower rate than a similar increase announced last summer.

Prices will go up 3.5% on average this September compared with a 4.9% hike implemented one year ago. The new rates will apply to ODFL 559, 670 and 550 tariffs, just like in 2016.

“Our [general rate increase] will affect our class tariffs and is intended to partially offset the rising costs of new equipment, real estate, technology investments and competitive employee wage and benefit packages. The [general rate increase] also provides for a nominal increase in minimum charges with respect to intrastate, interstate and cross-border lanes.” said Todd Polen, Old Dominion’s vice president of pricing. “In order to satisfy our customers’ expectations and deliver on the promises we have made, we must continue to enhance our high-quality service network and systems.”

The explanation is nearly identical to the one provided in September 2016 announcing the 4.9% hike.

In 2016, nearly every major less-than-truckload carrier raised prices between 4.9% and 5.25%, although in many cases, high-volume customers negotiate on the rate increase and reach an agreement on an individual basis.

Old Dominion ranks No. 11 on the Transport Topics Top 100 list of the largest North American for-hire carriers.