The U.S. economy is slowing, but more freight hit the highways in June, as truck tonnage increased 1.2 percent from May and rose 3.2 percent from a year ago.
June’s increase was the largest sequential monthly gain for the ATA For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index in 2012, the American Trucking Associations said Wednesday.
The 1.2 percent gain in the last month of the second quarter followed a combined 2.1 percent contraction in tonnage in April and May, the association said.
Source: American Trucking Associations
In May, the tonnage index slipped a revised 1 percent, a bigger drop than initially reported.
The annualized gain of 3.2 percent was the smallest since March, ATA said. Tonnage grew 3.8 percent year-over-year in May, and year-to-date it is up 3.7 percent.
“June’s increase was a pleasant surprise but the lower year-over-year gain fits with an economy that has slowed,” ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello said.
“Manufacturing output was strong in June, which helped tonnage levels,” he said.
Costello lowered his most optimistic outlook for growth in for-hire truck tonnage this year to 3.5 percent, from a previous high of 3.9 percent.