American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index increased 1% in December, following a decrease of 0.9% during November. In December, the index equaled 135.6 (2000=100), up from 134.3 in November, and 0.1% below the all-time high of 135.8 reached in January 2015.
The Freight Transportation Services Index (TSI), which is based on the amount of freight carried by the for-hire transportation industry, fell 1.0 percent in November from
October, falling after a one-month rise, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics’ (BTS). The November 2015 index
level (122.3) was 29.1 percent above the April 2009 low during the most recent recession.
Both the number of shipments and freight transportation expenditures continued their downward slide in December, falling 4.9 and 2.7 percent respectively. The declines are not unusual for December, but they capped off a second quarter of decline. In retrospect, 2015 did not even begin to reach the heights we reached in 2014. By the end of
2015, both shipment volume and expenditures fell back to 2013 levels. Expenditures for freight transportation were 5.2 percent lower than at the end of 2014 and shipment volume was down 3.7 percent from the same period.
With the holiday season over, import cargo volume at the nation’s major retail container ports is expected to slowly decline through the first quarter of the year, according to the monthly Global Port Tracker report released today by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.
“This is the time of year when the retail supply chain catches its breath before the next big rush begins,” NRF Vice President for Supply Chain and Customs Policy Jonathan Gold said. “Retailers are still tallying the bottom line of the holiday season, but they’re also making plans for the spring and summer.”
“The U.S. LEI registered another increase in November, with building permits, the interest rate spread, and stock prices driving the improvement,” said Ataman Ozyildirim, Director of Business Cycles and Growth Research at The Conference Board. “Although the six-month growth rate of the LEI has moderated, the economic outlook for the final quarter of the year and into the new year remains positive.”
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Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 292,000 in December, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 5.0 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment gains occurred in several industries, led by professional and business services, construction, health care, and food services and drinking places. Mining
employment continued to decline.
Economic activity in the manufacturing sector contracted in December for the second consecutive month, while the overall economy grew for the 79th consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®.
American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index declined 0.9% in November, following an increase of 1.8% during October. The October figure was revised down from our press release on November 24. In November, the index equaled 134.3 (2000=100), down from 135.5 in October, and 1.1% below the all-time high of 135.8 reached in January 2015.