Freight index unchanged in April

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The Freight Transportation Services Index was unchanged in April from its March level following the largest monthly decline since August 2006, the Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics reported Wednesday, June 11. Since an increase in January that was the largest in two years, the freight index has failed to advance for three consecutive months.

The index was unchanged in February and April with a decline in March. At 109.4 in April, the Freight TSI was up 1.3 percent since its recent low of 108.0 in September, but down 3.3 percent from its peak of 113.1 reached in November 2005. The 0.9 percent increase in the freight index since December marked the second consecutive year the index increased in the first four months.

The April level was marginally higher than the April 2007 level of 109.3 and follows two consecutive April-to-April declines. The index remains below the level of 110.5 achieved four years ago in April 2004. Despite declines from recent April levels, the freight index has increased 5.3 percent in five years and 8.9 percent in 10 years.

The Freight TSI is a seasonally adjusted index that measures the month-to-month changes in the output of services provided by the for-hire freight transportation industries, including for-hire trucking, rail, inland waterways, pipelines and air freight. The baseline year for the index, which includes historic data from 1990 to the present, is 2000.