ARLINGTON, Va. — For-hire truck tonnage edged up 2.1% in December, according to the latest American Trucking Associations (ATA) data.
The spike follows a 2.6% decline in November. December tonnage is at its highest level since November 2008, according to the ATA, and it was up 6.6% compared to December 2008.
For all of 2009, the ATA says tonnage was down 8.3% year-over-year.
“The robust tonnage numbers in November and December were aided by better economic growth as well as a positive inventory effect,” ATA chief economist Bob Costello said. “However, economic activity is expected to moderate in the current quarter, which will keep a lid on tonnage growth.”
Costello also commented on the year-over-year gain in tonnage.
“While the index was moving toward positive year-over-year readings in recent months, December’s gain was due, in part, to a 7.8% plunge a year earlier,” he noted. “There is no doubt that the industry is moving the right direction, but the level of freight will not be as strong as the year-over-year increases suggest because of how terrible it was in late 2008 and much of 2009.”
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