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News / North America Transportation

Cass Freight Index Report – October 2016

Source: Cass Information Systems, Inc. 

Consistent with what many in the industry have been calling a “more than normal fall surge” in volumes, the Cass Shipments Index was up on a YOY basis for the first time in 20 months. We have seen a wide range of results in the different modes: from continued volume growth in parcel and airfreight driven by e‐commerce, to a sequential improvement in truck tonnage, to less bad rail and barge volume overall. Although it is far too early to make a ‘change in trend’ call, data is beginning to suggest that the consumer is finally starting to spend a little and that the industrial economy’s rate of deceleration has eased. Simply put, the winter of the overall freight recession we have seen for over a year and a half in the U.S. may not be over, but it is showing signs of thawing.

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ATA Truck Tonnage Index Fell 0.3% in October

American Trucking Associations

American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index contracted 0.3% in October, following a 6.3% drop during September (a downward revision from our press release last month). In October, the index equaled 131.6 (2000=100), down from 131.9 in September. The all-time high was 144 in February.

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ATA Truck Tonnage Index Fell 5.8% in September

American Trucking Associations

American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index contracted 5.8% in September, following a 5% rise during August (a slight downward revision from our press release last month). In September, the index equaled 132.7 (2000=100), down from 140.8 in August. The all-time high was 144 in February.

ata-truck-tonnage-index-101816

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Cass Freight Index Report – September

Cass Information Systems, Inc.

After offering a glimmer of ‘less bad’ hope in August (only down 1.1% YoY and up 0.4% sequentially), the Cass Freight Index shipments data in September disappointed, providing hindsight that August only gave us ‘false hope.’ September data is once again signaling that overall shipment volumes (and pricing) continued to be weak in most modes, with increased levels of volatility as all levels of the supply chain (manufacturing, wholesale, retail) continue to try and work down inventory levels. That said, there have been a few areas of growth, mostly related to e-commerce, with lower levels of expansion being experienced in transit modes serving the auto and housing/construction industries. All of this added up to lower shipment volume in September on a YoY (Year-over-Year) basis, marking the nineteenth straight month of year-over-year decline. Bottom line, the Industrial Recession in the U.S. that began in March of 2015 continues to weigh on overall volumes.

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ATA Truck Tonnage Index Jumped 5.7% in August

American Trucking Associations

American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index increased 5.7% in August, following a 2.1% decline during July. In August, the index equaled 141.8 (2000=100), up from 134.2 in July. The all-time high was 144 in February.

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Cass Freight Index Report – August 2016

Cass Information Systems

August’s Cass Freight Index continued to signal that overall shipment volumes (and pricing) are persistently weak, with increased levels of volatility as all levels of the supply chain (manufacturing, wholesale, retail) continue to try and work down inventory levels. That said, there have been a few areas of growth, mostly related to e-commerce, with lower levels of expansion being experienced in transit modes serving the auto and housing/construction industries. All of this added up to slightly lower shipment volumes in August on a YoY (year-over-year) basis, marking the eighteenth straight month of year-over-year decline. That said, at least on a seasonally adjusted basis, August volume was up sequentially, offering a glimmer of hope that the contraction in volumes may be getting closer to an end.

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Details from The September 2016 Short-Term Energy Outlook

U.S. Energy Information Administration

Key details from the latest Short-Term Energy Outlook released from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Some of the highlights included the following:

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Cass Freight Index Report

Cass Information Systems Inc

July’s Cass Freight Index confirmed that overall shipment volumes (and pricing) are persistently weak, with increased levels of volatility as all levels of the supply chain (manufacturing, wholesale, retail) continue to try and work down inventory levels. That said, there have been a few areas of growth, mostly related to e-commerce, with lower levels of expansion being experienced in transit modes serving the auto and housing/ construction industries. All of this added up to slightly lower shipment volume in July, the seventeenth straight month of year-over-year decline.

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June 2016 Freight Transportation Services Index (TSI)

U.S. Department of Transportation

The Freight Transportation Services Index (TSI), which is based on the amount of freight carried by the for-hire transportation industry, rose 0.6 percent in June from May, rising for the third consecutive month, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics’ (BTS). The June 2016 index level (122.3) was 29.1 percent above the April 2009 low during the most recent recession.

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On-Highway Diesel Historical & Forecast

Energy Information Administration

In reviewing the Short Term Energy Outlook which was released on August 9th, the below product prices for regular gasoline and diesel pricing were forecast for 2016 and 2017:

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