Road transport capacity in Europe falls significantly while prices are rising due to Brexit



General development

  • Compared to the previous month, road transport capacity fell significantly by -16.4% in December 2020. The European spot market availability index now stands at 85.9 points.

  • Currently, there is significantly less road transport capacity available on the market than a year before. The capacity index fell by -16% compared to December 2019.

  • Transport prices increased by +3.9% between November and December 2020. Compared to December 2019, prices went down by -2,7%.


Brexit impact

  • Significantly falling capacity and rising prices can especially be observed on the corridor between France and the UK, which is impacted by Brexit. Road transport capacity from France to the UK reached a two-year-low at 58.8 index points. This corresponds to a huge decrease of -39.4% compared to the previous month. Prices went up strongly (+34.8%) during the same period, peaking at 154.3 index points, a two-year-high. Compared to December 2019, transport capacity fell by -22.1% while prices soared +51%.


  • Transport capacity and prices for goods shipped from Germany to the UK showed a similar development. Transport capacity decreased by -29.7% between November and December 2020, reaching a two-year-low of 85.3 index points. At the same time, prices rose sharply by +41.2%, reaching a two-year-high of 153.9 index points.


Industry focus

  • In the European automotive sector, road transport capacity went down by
    -17.9% in December 2020 compared to November 2020, falling to a two-year low of 72.3 index points. Prices have continued to follow their positive trend since May 2020 peaking at a two-year high of 105.6 index points for the automotive branch. This corresponds to an increasement of +1.8% in December 2020 compared to the month before.


  • In the chemicals and life sciences sector, the road transport capacity index fell strongly by -14.6% to 96.2 points in December 2020 compared to the previous month. Prices have jumped by +13.5% during the same period in the industry.


  • Transport capacities in the steel sector went down significantly by -22.5% between November and December 2020. At the same time, prices reached a two-year high of 111.2 points. Since May 2020, a stable trend of steadily rising transport prices can be observed in the steel sector. From November to December 2020 alone, prices have sharply risen by +8.7%.


This is the result of the most recent evaluation of the Transport Market Monitor (TMM). The online service is provided by Tim Consult on the basis of road transportation data of more than 1.8 million freight loads per year. The processed data, stemming from the spot market, is provided by Transporeon, Europe’s leading network provider for transport logistics services. The report is based on data available up to January 7, 2021.

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