The American Trucking Assns.’ (ATA) seasonally adjusted For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index increased 1.7% in November, the first month-to-month improvement since June 2008 after the index contracted a total of 6.3% from June to October.
However, ATA warned that the freight outlook remains bleak, as the not seasonally adjusted index fell 15.4% in November. It was also 1.8% lower than November 2007, marking the second straight year-over-year decrease.
“Don’t let November’s increase in the seasonally adjusted index fool you,” said ATA chief economist Bob Costello. “Freight volumes were down substantially before any seasonality is taken out of the data.” He added that he expects freight to further weaken as the economy continues to contract in the first half of 2009.