Top 25 LTL Trucking Companies

Top 25 LTL Trucking Companies

In 2017, the 25 largest less-than-truckload carriers in the US increased their combined revenue 7.8 percent, as higher industrial production and disciplined pricing raised their topline. That sizable gain followed a flat year for LTL revenue in 2016 and a revenue drop of 0.5 percent in 2015, as freight demand tumbled in the latest slowdown in the long-running economic recovery.

The US economy grew at a faster rate in 2017, and strong industrial production helped create more pallets of goods to fill LTL terminals and trailers. The combined revenue of the 25 largest LTL carriers in the US reached a new record of $34.5 billion. Just two LTL carriers reported less revenue year over year in 2017, compared with 10 in 2016 and 12 in 2015.

Some of the fastest-growing LTL carriers, however, weren’t on the list. The smaller LTL and cartage companies that didn’t make the Top 25 grew faster as a group than their larger competitors, increasing combined revenue 8.5 percent to $3.2 billion. That revenue would make those small companies the fourth largest LTL carrier if they were one trucking company.

Key stories in LTL:

Top 25 LTL 2017: LTL carriers pave way to growth in challenging market

Top 25 LTL 2016: Lower fuel surcharges, soft demand squeeze revenue

Top 25 LTL 2015: Revenue up 9.1 percent for largest US LTL carriers

Top 25 LTL 2014: Revenue Growth at LTL Truckers Drops

Top 25 LTL 2013: Economic Slowdown Detours LTL Growth

Top 25 LTL 2012: LTL's Second Wind

Top 25 LTL 2011: LTL's Incomplete Recovery

J. Harwood Cochrane: Present at the Birth of Trucking

News & Analysis

26 Jan 2022
Proactive steps taken by US and Canadian motor carriers and shippers ahead of vaccine mandates for truck drivers are keeping cross-border freight flowing despite earlier fears of disruption and delays.
25 Jan 2022
High freight demand, driven by US imports and e-commerce, will keep pressure on less-than-truckload capacity and pricing in 2022, speakers said at the annual SMC3 JumpStart conference.
18 Jan 2022
XPO is adding new facilities and technology to its less-than-truckload network, reducing reliance on third parties.
06 Jan 2022
The fast-spreading variant of COVID-19 likely won’t affect trucking as much as warehousing and aviation, but its indirect impact will put more pressure on already high trucking costs.
17 Dec 2021
FedEx Freight handled higher freight volumes and helped with the delivery of FedEx Ground packages this fall, relying on price hikes and “judicious” network management.
16 Dec 2021
Once often discounted, general rate increases are going to stick as LTL trucking demand grows faster than capacity.
14 Dec 2021
The diversion of freight from intermodal rail to truck adds miles to import shipments, significantly increasing costs, the Cass Freight Index finds.
13 Dec 2021
LTL shippers that used Central Freight Lanes should expect their transportation costs to rise in a tightening market in the wake of the Texas-based carrier’s sudden closure.
07 Dec 2021
The for-hire trucking industry lost jobs in November, as it typically does, but fewer than anticipated as couriers and warehouses grabbed the most new employees amid strong pre-holiday demand.
06 Dec 2021
The largest US truckload operator acquired its second LTL carrier this year, bringing it closer to a national network and more than $900 million in LTL revenue.
06 Dec 2021
Several factors are diminishing shipper expectations for new truck capacity in 2022, as Class 8 truck production and delivery dates are pushed out more than a year and backlogs build.
02 Dec 2021
The ninth-largest LTL carrier is in a race to build out its network capacity as more freight and heavier shipments hit its docks.
12 Nov 2021
Southeastern Freight Lines is working with Relay Payments to automate accessorial payment processes such as “lumper fees” as LTL firms look to digitize more aspects of their business.
08 Nov 2021
An exemption to the US’ large employer vaccine mandate granted to outdoor workers may cover truck drivers, the American Trucking Association argues. But it’s not clear that exemption would apply to all types of truck drivers.
05 Nov 2021
Bigger than expected gains in warehousing and trucking in October are welcome amid ongoing reports of labor shortages.
05 Nov 2021
The Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccination and testing mandate for large employers will affect truck capacity and pricing, but questions about the extent of its impact remain.
04 Nov 2021
A survey of independent truckers and small trucking firms by Truckstop.com and Bloomberg Intelligence found them optimistic about the potential for higher contract and spot rates next year.
03 Nov 2021
A truck driver survey underscores the threat of potential service disruptions from an upcoming US vaccine mandate for large employers, with 36 percent of drivers showing no interest in vaccination.
02 Nov 2021
Trucking companies are seeking an exemption to the COVID-19 vaccine mandate being implemented by the US government for large employers, which they say would further disrupt already tight US trucking capacity.
29 Oct 2021
With less-than-truckload demand high and capacity tight, TFI International is clawing back its US LTL network to improve freight and lane density and profitability.
28 Oct 2021
Tight LTL capacity and rates that have climbed by double digits are creating opportunities for more dynamic LTL pricing, if it can be shown to benefit shippers and carriers.
26 Oct 2021
The ongoing semiconductor shortage is reducing deliveries of new trucks in North America and threatening the addition of much-needed capacity in 2022, and perhaps beyond.
21 Oct 2021
C.H. Robinson Worldwide is linking its less-than-truckload carrier network to the retail platform offered by SPS Commerce to help shippers get retail goods onto shelves and avoid holiday stockouts.
08 Oct 2021
LTL carriers including Old Dominion Freight Line are turning to surcharges to keep over-sized, unwieldy shipments from clogging their networks, taking a page from parcel carriers.
05 Oct 2021
Recent merger and acquisition activity, such as the ArcBest-Molo deal, proves many investors believe opportunity lies in third-party logistics providers.
29 Sep 2021
The $235 million acquisition of MoLo Solutions will double ArcBest’s available capacity and reflects an industrywide drive to access capacity across modes and networks.
27 Sep 2021
Trucking equipment manufacturers are raking in new orders for trailers and tractors, but it may be well into 2022 before they roll off production lines ready to move freight.
22 Sep 2021
The largest US trucking company, FedEx Freight, is improving profits while handling more cargo, as sister division FedEx Ground deals with congestion blamed partly on labor shortages.
21 Sep 2021
Demand fueled tonnage growth at for-hire contract carriers in August, according to the American Trucking Associations, but supply chain disruption and shortages still constrain overall capacity.
07 Sep 2021
Less-than-truckload carrier Old Dominion Freight Line hopes to counter the threat of COVID-19 to its own employees and its customers with a financial vaccination incentive.
03 Sep 2021
Rather than adding terminals, XPO says it is deploying technology to better utilize existing space in its trailers and speed trucks, effectively expanding the capacity it can offer customers.
29 Aug 2021
Instead of waiting for autonomous trucks, shippers starving for capacity should automate processes starting with freight pickup and delivery to save drivers time, says MIT FreightLab’s co-director.
20 Aug 2021
As supply chain disruption increases, tracking technology and higher detention charges are two methods LTL carriers are using to combat trailer detention and encourage shippers to speed turns
12 Aug 2021
Forget the fall, the peak US truck shipping season is under way now, trucking analysts say, with spot truckload rates elevated and contract rates still climbing.
10 Aug 2021
Old Dominion Freight Line, the second-largest US LTL carrier, is accelerating a $275 million expansion plan as surging LTL becomes more central to the consumer economy.
15 Jul 2021
Digital broker Uber Freight is expanding its truckload platform to encompass LTL, as strapped US shippers turn to LTL carriers and 3PLs such as BlueGrace for capacity.

Commentary

It is shocking that the less-than-truckload (LTL) sector continues to operate with legacy business practices from the reg

More Commentary