Truck tonnage, a measure of freight movement, declined 3.2% in August after jumping 6.2% in July, according to the American Trucking Associations‘ monthly Truck Tonnage Index.
Compared with August 2018, tonnage was up 4.1%. The index is up 4.3% year-to-date compared with the same period last year.
“The large swings continued in August, but the good news is the trend line is still up,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “While there is concern over economic growth, truck tonnage shows that it is unlikely that the economy is slipping into a recession. It is important to note that ATA’s tonnage data is dominated by contract freight, which is performing significantly better than the plunge in spot market freight this year.”
July’s reading was revised down compared with our August press release.