Seasonally adjusted for-hire truck tonnage fell 3.6% in November after falling 1.9% in October, according to a report released by the American Trucking Assns. (ATA). Year-over-year in November the index declined 8.8%.
ATA said tonnage fell to its lowest level since late 2003. Year-to-date, the tonnage index was down 2.8% compared with the same period in 2005.
“November 2006 marked the single worst month for for-hire truck tonnage since the last recession,” said ATA chief economist Bob Costello. “Both the month-to-moth and year-over-year decreases indicate that the economic slowdown is in full gear.
“The most troubling number is the 8.8% contraction from November 2005, despite the fact that year-over-year comparisons are difficult due to the very robust volumes during the same month last year,” Costello continued. “One month certainly doesn’t make a trend but if we continue to see year-over-year reductions of similar magnitudes in the next couple of months, it could indicate a greater economic slowdown than economists are projecting at this point.”