ARLINGTON, Va. — American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted (SA) for-hire truck tonnage index fell for the first time since September, down 5.7% in December. In December, the index equaled 142.9 (2000=100), down from 151.6 in November.
For all of 2017, compared with 2016, the index was up 3.7%. This was the largest annual gain since 2013 (6.1%).
Compared with December 2016, the SA index increased 5.9%, which was down from November’s 7.5% year-over-year gain.
The not seasonally adjusted index, which represents the change in tonnage actually hauled by the fleets before any seasonal adjustment, equaled 141.9 in December, which was 3.4% below the previous month (146.9).
“Despite the decline in December, last year was a solid year for truck tonnage, especially during the second half of 2017,” said ATA chief economist Bob Costello. “I remain optimistic for 2018 for a host of reasons, including a pick-up in factory activity, better housing construction, solid retail sales, and an expected shot in the arm from the new tax law.”