Wednesday, July 24, 2019

US Freight Tonnage Trucking Figures Slipped Slightly Against Past Months

Road Haulage Industry Index Shows Some Resilience However
Shipping News Feature
US – The American road haulage sector has long counselled that trucking serves as a barometer of the US economy, representing 70.2% of tonnage carried by all modes of domestic freight transportation, including manufactured and retail goods. Now the latest figures from the American Trucking Associations' (ATA) advanced seasonally adjusted For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index shows a small decline.

The Index decreased 1.1% in June after falling 4% in May. In June, the index equalled 115.2 (2015=100) compared with 116.5 in May. May’s reading was revised upward compared to the initial figures published by the ATA in June. ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello, said:

“Tonnage continues to show resilience as it posted the twenty-sixth year-over-year increase despite falling for the second straight month sequentially. The year-over-year gain was the smallest over the past two years, but the level of freight remains quite high. Tonnage is outperforming other trucking metrics as heavy freight sectors, like tank truck, are witnessing better freight levels than sectors like dry van, which has a lower average weight per load.”

Compared with June 2018, the seasonally adjusted index increased 1.5%, the smallest year-over-year gain since April 2017. The not seasonally adjusted index, which represents the change in tonnage actually hauled by the fleets before any seasonal adjustment, equalled 117.6 in June, 3.3% below May level (121.7). In calculating the index, 100 represents 2015.

The ATA calculates the tonnage index based on surveys from its membership and has been doing so since the 1970s. This is a preliminary figure and subject to change in the final report issued around the 5th day of each month. The report includes month-to-month and year-over-year results, relevant economic comparisons, and key financial indicators.