One of the brokers we use is a well established, international broker who arranges millions of dollars worth of business and assists in the transportation of hundreds of commodities throughout the world. This company, which will remain nameless, started as a produce broker in Irvine, California in 1906. It is a well respected company in the industry and heaven knows they have helped our company in many ways since we started contracting with them several months ago.
My complaint is with an over-zealous, greedy broker agent for this agency based out of a California. When my boss called the brokerage, they informed us that they had two loads set up for us from Seattle to Los Angeles and back. Between the two loads, the rate averaged $1.41 per mile. Not a very good rate to say the least, but sometimes you have to take the good with the bad when winter hampers your ability to find good loads in the Northwest. The load coming back to Seattle was first quoted at $2000 dollars for a truckload, one way. My boss then proceeded to give them our information and was told to call back in 5 minutes for his load confirmation. When my boss called back, he was greeted by the over-zealous, demanding, greedy woman who stated the load was available for $1600! What a jump, $400 dollars in 5 minutes! When the boss questioned why the $400 difference, the agent complained and cussed that we, truckers in general, complained too much about low rates and that we should be happy with what we were offered from her, the $1600 dollar rate.
By now you can see the problem with shipping today. The “big dogs” of brokers are keeping a larger portion of the proceeds while giving the shaft to smaller trucking companies. The rate quoted included the fuel surcharge and we would be stuck taking the load or another low-ball company would swoop down and take the load for whatever rate they could get to position their truck in Seattle. Do you ever wonder why our economy is suffering and freight shipping costs are going through the roof? The poor independent trucker is going out of business and trucks are being repo’ed at record rates! With an administration in Washington DC who cares so much about NAFTA and the companies south of the border, no wonder the rest of us need to start buying massive quantities of petroleum jelly because it’s going to really hurt us all who are only trying to make an honest living!