Tonnage slid in March

The American Trucking Assns. (ATA) today reported that its seasonally adjusted for-hire truck tonnage index decreased 3.2% in March, following a revised 3.6% drop in February

The American Trucking Assns. (ATA) today reported that its seasonally adjusted for-hire truck tonnage index decreased 3.2% in March, following a revised 3.6% drop in February.

This put the index down to its lowest level since November 2003. Compared with March 2005, the index was 2.6 % lower.

ATA chief economist Bob Costello said March marked the first time since 2001 that tonnage volumes declined on a year-over-year basis for three consecutive months.

Costello said motor carriers have anecdotally reported that freight volumes were weaker than normal during the first part of the month but rebounded by month's end and remained strong through early April.

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