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ATA Truck Tonnage Index Fell 0.9% in August




Contact: Sean McNally

September 22, 2015

(703) 838-1995


ATA Truck Tonnage Index Fell 0.9% in August
Index Posts 2.1% Year-Over-Year Gain


Arlington, Va. — American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index declined 0.9% in August, following a revised increase of 3.1% during July. In August, the index equaled 134.2 (2000=100), down from 135.3 in July. The all-time high of 135.8 was reached in January 2015.


Compared with August 2014, the SA index increased 2.1%, which was below the 4% gain in July. Year-to-date through August, compared with the same period last year, tonnage was up 3.3%.


The not seasonally adjusted index, which represents the change in tonnage actually hauled by the fleets before any seasonal adjustment, equaled 137.0 in August, which was 0.5% below the previous month (137.6).


“After such a robust July, it is not too surprising that tonnage took a breather in August,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “The dip after a strong gain goes with the up and down pattern we’ve seen this year.”


Costello said a few factors hurt August’s reading, including soft housing starts and falling factory output.


“As I said last month, I remain concerned about the high level of inventories throughout the supply chain. This could have a negative impact on truck freight volumes over the next few months,” he said.


Trucking serves as a barometer of the U.S. economy, representing 68.8% of tonnage carried by all modes of domestic freight transportation, including manufactured and retail goods. Trucks hauled just under 10 billion tons of freight in 2014. Motor carriers collected $700.4 billion, or 80.3% of total revenue earned by all transport modes.


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 10th day of the month. The report includes month-to-month and year-over-year results, relevant economic comparisons and key financial indicators.


The American Trucking Associations is the largest national trade association for the trucking industry. Through a federation of 50 affiliated state trucking associations and industry-related conferences and councils, ATA is the voice of the industry America depends on most to move our nation’s freight. Follow ATA on Twitter or on Facebook. Trucking Moves America Forward.