#120663639@Carolyn Franks|Dreamtime
Truck Tonnage Increases in December

Truck Tonnage Increased in December

Jan. 25, 2024
“While 2023 ended on a better note, truck tonnage remained in a recession as it continued to fall on a year-over-year basis,” said ATA.

On January 23, the American Trucking Associations reported that its advanced seasonally adjusted For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index increased 2.1% in December. In November the index fell 1.4%.

In December, the index equaled 115.7 (2015=100) compared with 113.3 in November.

“While 2023 ended on a better note, truck tonnage remained in a recession as it continued to fall on a year-over-year basis,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello, in a statement. “With that said, for-hire contract freight, which is what comprises our index, in December was 2.6% above the trough in April.

For the entire year, tonnage contracted 1.7% from 2022 levels. This makes 2023 the worst annual reading since 2020 when the index fell 4% from 2019, and the only year since 2020 that tonnage contracted.”

Compared with December 2022, the SA index fell 0.5%, which was the tenth straight year-over-year decrease, albeit the smallest over that period. In November, the index was down 1.6% from a year earlier.

The non-seasonally adjusted index, which represents the change in tonnage actually hauled by the fleets before any seasonal adjustment, equaled 110.7 in December, 1.9% below November’s level (112.8). In calculating the index, 100 represents 2015. ATA’s For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index is dominated by contract freight as opposed to spot market freight.

Trucking serves as a barometer of the U.S. economy, representing 72.6% of tonnage carried by all modes of domestic freight transportation, including manufactured and retail goods. Trucks hauled 11.46 billion tons of freight in 2022. Motor carriers collected $940.8 billion, or 80.7% of total revenue earned by all transport modes.

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