The freight broker industry experienced a huge decrease in the number of licensed brokers at the end of 2013, which shrank from about 21,000 in the start of December 2013, to about 13,203 in early January 2014. This major 37% decrease in active licensed brokers is due to the FMCSA’s December 1st, 2013 deadline to get a $75,000 surety bond in order for brokers to legally operate. Although some freight brokers left the industry voluntarily, most had their authorities revoked by the FMCSA. However, there are encouraging signs the freight broker industry is back on the upswing.
Steady Increase in Active Licensed Freight Brokers
According to the database maintained by My Carrier Resources, the number of active licensed freight brokers has increased from 13,203 in the first week of January, 2014 to 13,832 brokers in the third week of February, 2014. Although a 5% rise in active licensed freight brokers may seem small, an increase of this size in just an eight week period is clearly significant.
$75K Surety Bond Requirements Stands
Contrary to what many thought, the $75,000 financial responsibility requirement for current and new freight brokers to operate their own brokerage is still intact. Freight brokers and forwarders alike must get the $75,000 bond to broker loads. There are affordable freight broker bond markets, which hopefully will aid in continuing the growth of active licensed freight brokers in the months to come.