New technology helped Estes Express Lines improve productivity and keep its general rate increase to 3.7 percent this year, the company said.
Estes, the largest privately owned less-than-truckload carrier, raised its tariff rates 3.7 percent on average July 8, a much lower increase than the 5.9 percent GRI at many competitors.
In 2012, Estes and many of its LTL competitors implemented general rate increases of 6.9 percent on average.
"Our continued investments in technology have enabled us to moderate our increase by improving employee productivity," Estes said in a statement.
The GRI only affects non-contract freight, typically a small part of an LTL's carrier's overall volume. But GRIs point to the direction carriers think pricing should go.
LTL trucking companies are still recovering from a disastrous drop in revenue in 2009, when the 25 largest carriers lost 31.6 percent of their combined revenue.
Estes Express, a $1.7 billion company and the seventh-largest LTL carrier, increased revenue 1.5 percent in 2012, according to SJ Consulting Group data.