ATA Truck Tonnage Index rose 0.8% in October

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Ata Tonnage

The American Trucking Associations’ advance seasonally adjusted For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index rose 0.8 percent in October after increasing a revised 1.8 percent in September. The latest gain put the adjusted index at 109.7 in October from 108.9 in September. The nonadjusted index, which represents the change in tonnage actually hauled by the fleets before any seasonal adjustment, equaled 112.9 in October, up 0.3 percent from the previous month.

Compared with October 2009, adjusted tonnage climbed 6.0 percent, which was better than September’s 5.3 percent year-over-year gain. Year-to-date, tonnage is up 6.1 percent compared with the same period in 2009. ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello said that truck tonnage changes over the last couple of months shows there are some bright spots in the U.S. economy.

“October tonnage levels were at the highest level in three months, even after accounting for typical seasonal shipping patterns,” Costello says. “These gains fit with reports out of both the manufacturing and retail sectors and show there is a little bit of life in this economic recovery.”

ATA calculates the tonnage index based on surveys from its membership. The report includes month-to-month and year-over-year results, relevant economic comparisons and key financial indicators. The baseline year is 2000.