In July, the American Trucking Associations' for-hire truck tonnage index fell 0.4 percent, the index’s first drop since April.
Last month, the index inched up 0.1 percent.
“After gaining a total of 2.2 percent in May and June, it isn’t surprising that tonnage slipped a little in July,” ATA’s Bob Costello said in a statement. “The decrease corresponds with the small decline in manufacturing output during July reported by the Federal Reserve last week.”
Officials expect a rebound during the last half of 2013 due to expected growth in the automotive, gas and other sectors that generate heavy freight. Home construction is expected to fall off a bit toward the end of the year, so tonnage generated from this activity will decrease.
Costello anticipates tonnage activity gains to likely “overstate the strength in the economy as these heavy freight sectors continue to outperform the economy overall.” - Jon Ross