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US truck tonnage declines in August

ARLINGTON, Va. -- US truck tonnage dropped 0.8% in August, following a slight rebound in July.


ARLINGTON, Va. — US truck tonnage dropped 0.8% in August, following a slight rebound in July.

The seasonally-adjusted truck tonnage index may have dropped in August, but is still up 0.9% compared to a year earlier, the American Trucking Associations (ATA) reports. Thats the first year-over-year increase since March of this year.

So far in 2007, the tonnage index is 2.2% lower than during the same period last year. ATAs chief economist, Bob Costello, attributed the August tonnage to continued softness in the trucking industry, particularly as it relates to weight of goods shipped.

“August 2006 marked the beginning of the current slowdown for our industry,” Costello pointed out. “The slight year-over-year gain this August is primarily due to easier comparisons and is not indicative of a turnaround for the economy and trucking.”

The ATA predicts a lackluster fall freight season this year.

“Economic growth just isn’t strong enough to significantly boost truck tonnage anytime soon,” Costello said. “We recently reduced our economic forecasts and don’t believe tonnage will consistently grow at its historical average over the last ten years of 2.5% until the second half of 2008.

ATAs truck tonnage rate is calculated based on member surveys.


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