Freight index fell 1.9% in August from July

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The Freight Transportation Services Index fell 1.9 percent in August from its July level, declining after four consecutive monthly increases, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics reported today, Oct. 8.

For the first eight months of 2008, the freight index advanced 2.2 percent, its largest increase for the first eight months of the year since 2002. The index rose 0.1 percent in the first eight months of the year in 2007. The freight index has increased in six of the first eight months this year, declining only in March and August.

At 110.8 in August, the Freight TSI was up 2.6 percent since its recent low of 108.0 in September 2007, but down 2.1 percent from its historic peak of 113.1 reached in November 2005. The August 2008 Freight TSI level rose 1.6 percent compared to the August 2007 level of 109.0. During the previous 12-month period, August 2006 to August 2007, the index gained 0.1 percent.

The index remains below the August 2005 level. Despite modest gains since 2004, the freight index has increased 7.1 percent in five years and 10.4 percent in 10 years.

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