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Freight Shipments Rose 0.3% in July

September 11, 2013

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Freight carried by the for-hire transportation industry rose 0.3% in July from June, rising after a one month decline.

The July 2013 index level was 20.5% above the April 2009 low during the most recent recession, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics’ Freight Transportation Services Index.

Five Years: Freight Transportation Services Index, July 2008- July 2013
Five Years: Freight Transportation Services Index, July 2008- July 2013

BTS reports the level of freight shipments in July measured by the Freight TSI was the second highest all-time level. The July index was 0.8% below the all-time high of 115.2 in December 2011.

The June index was revised to 114.0 from 113.8 in the previous release. The April index was revised to 112.9 from 112.8.

The increase of 0.3% in July freight transportation was driven by increases in rail intermodal and inland water shipments, with small increases in trucking and rail carloads. The slow increase in July after a decrease in June is likely influenced by the decrease in manufacturing output in July.

The Freight TSI remained above its 2012 range for the seventh month in a row. Beginning with January, every month in 2013 has exceeded the high point of 2012, 112.3 reached in December. The July 2013 level is the highest TSI freight has been in 2013, and is the second highest all-time level exceeded only by December 2011. After dipping to 94.9 in April 2009, the index rose 20.5% in the succeeding 51 months.

Freight shipments in July 2013 (114.3) were 20.5% higher than the recent low in April 2009 during the recession (94.9). The July 2013 level is down 0.8% from the historic peak reached in December 2011 (115.2).

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