The Cass Freight Index for U.S. shipments fell for the first time in nearly two years in November, slipping 2.9 percent in a sign that the fall’s peak shipping season was easing into a lower gear.
The closely watched measure of U.S. demand also fell 2.3 percent from October, the second straight month-to-month decline.
It was the first year-over-year decline in the shipments index in 21 months, and November’s reading left the index 12 percent off the 2011 set in September and at its lowest point of the year since February.
By the Numbers: Cass Freight Index
The measure by Cass Information Systems still showed some strength in demand, however. The index for shipper expenditures growing 14 percent year-over-year, an indication of higher costs that have come with rising fuel prices and tight capacity in domestic transportation networks.
The expenditures index was down 1.2 percent sequentially from October to November.