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It is a HUGE misconception that brokers controll the market. Supply and demand, as Steve said, is the driving force. Also, I broker roughly 30 loads a week, and at least 1/2 of them are negotiated "flat rates", where fuel sur charge isn't even discussed. As far as east coast rates go, the poor market for trucks up there is offset by the fact that I'm paying $2.50 - $3.00pr mile from CA, the south east, and the midwest to get trucks to go there. We are used by our customers as a tool for qualifying hiring, dispaching and tracking carriers. In many cases, the rate is determined by us finding a truck and negotiating the rate w/ them FIRST, then adding our profit and quoting the customer. My best friend in this business is LOOSING HIS A@@@@ right now because the customer he contacted rates w/ is not allowing him any room for adjustment with regards to fuel. Why in the world anyone thinks we have that much power is beyond me.
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