More signs of macro weakness in the trucking industry (via the ATA):
The American Trucking Associations’ advance seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index fell 2.7 percent in August, which was the largest month-to-month decrease since March 2009. The latest drop lowered the SA index from 110 (2000=100) in July to 106.9 in August.
The not seasonally adjusted index, which represents the change in tonnage actually hauled by the fleets before any seasonal adjustment, equaled 113.5 in August, up 3.2 percent from the previous month.
Compared with August 2009, SA tonnage climbed 2.9 percent, which was well below July’s 7.4 percent year-over-year gain. Year-to-date, tonnage is up 6.2 percent compared with the same period in 2009.
ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello said that August’s data highlights that the economy, while still growing, is slowing. “We fully anticipate sluggish economic growth for the remainder of this year and the latest tonnage numbers are reflecting that slowdown.” However, Costello believes that the trucking environment has changed dramatically. “While I’d much rather see better tonnage figures, motor carriers can now do better with small increases in demand since so much supply left the industry during the recession.”