ATA Truck Tonnage Index rose 0.5% in October
Nov 22, 2011 5:00 PM
The American Trucking Associations’ advance seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index increased 0.5% in October after rising a revised 1.5% in September 2011.
September’s increase was slightly less than the 1.6% gain ATA reported on October 25, 2011. The latest gain put the SA index at 116.3 (2000=100) in October, up from the September level of 115.8.
The not-seasonally-adjusted-index, which represents the change in tonnage actually hauled by the fleets before any seasonal adjustment, equaled 118.5 in October, which was 0.8% below the previous month.
Compared with October 2010, SA tonnage was up 5.7%. In September, the tonnage index was 5.8% above a year earlier. Further, October’s tonnage reading was just 4.4% below the index’s all-time high in January 2005.
“Tonnage readings continue to show that economy is growing and not sliding back into recession,” ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello said. “Over the last two months, tonnage is up nearly 2% and is just shy of the recent high in January of this year.”
Costello added that he expects freight and the economy to increase at a slower pace next year, but that truck tonnage can outpace GDP growth. “Manufacturing output has been the primary reason why truck freight volumes are increasing more than GDP,” he said. “The industrial sector should slow next year, but still grow more than GDP, which means truck tonnage can increase faster than GDP too.”
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