ATA Truck Tonnage Index
advances in February 2012
Mar 28, 2012 10:36 AM
The American Trucking Associations (ATA) advanced seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index rose 0.5% in February 2012 after falling 4.6% in January.
January 2012’s decrease was more than the preliminary 4% drop ATA reported February 28. The latest gain put the SA index at 119.3 (2000=100), up from January’s level of 118.7. Compared with February 2011, the SA index was up 5.5%, better than January’s 3.1% increase.
The not seasonally adjusted index, which represents the change in tonnage actually hauled by the fleets before any seasonal adjustment, equaled 112.9 in February 2012, which was 1.3% above the previous month.
“Fleets told us that February was decent, and that played out in the numbers,” said Bob Costello, ATA chief economist. He noted that February’s month-to-month increase was the sixth in the past seven months.
“I’m still expecting continued truck tonnage growth going forward. Rising manufacturing activity and temperate consumer spending should be helped a little from an improving housing market,” he said.
Trucking serves as a barometer of the US economy, representing 67.2% of tonnage carried by all modes of domestic freight transportation, including manufactured and retail goods. Trucks hauled 9 billion tons of freight in 2010. Motor carriers collected $563.4 billion, or 81.2% of total revenue earned by all transport modes.
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