Freight index climbs 1.3% in September

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The Freight Transportation Services Index rose 1.3% in September to 109.5 from the August level of 108.1, rising after two consecutive monthly decreases, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics reported today, Nov. 7.

However, the September 2006 level fell 1.0% from the September 2005 level of 110.6, the second consecutive decline from September of the previous year and the largest September-to-September decline since 2001. For the first nine months of 2006, the Freight TSI has fallen 1.3%, the second consecutive decline in the December-to-September period and the biggest decline in the period since 2000.

The overall TSI, which also includes passenger transportation data, rose 1.5% in September to 110.3 from its August level of 108.7, rising one month after the largest monthly decline in five years. The rise in September was the first monthly increase after three consecutive monthly declines and the largest monthly increase since May.

For the first nine months of 2006, the overall TSI has fallen 0.2%, the first December-to-September decline since 2001. The September 2006 level of 110.3 for the combined freight and passenger index was 0.5% lower than the September 2005 level of 110.8, the first decline from September of the previous year since September 2001. However, the September level was 10.2% higher than the September level of the base year of 2000.

TSI is a seasonally-adjusted index of the month-to-month changes in the output of services provided by the for-hire transportation industries, including railroad, air, truck, inland waterways, pipeline and local transit.