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Supply Chain Graphic of the Week: ATA Freight Tonnage Up - but Still Down


Biggest Monthly Gain in 2021 in September, but Still well Below 2018 and 2019 Levels


Oct 21, 2021



The American Trucking Associations was out this week with its monthly Freight Tonnage Index for September and it was a good one for truckers, with a rise in volumes of 2.4% versus the previous month, after basically coming in flat in August.


But as can be seen in the chart below from ATA, while tonnage has recovered to an extent after lows at the start of the pandemic last year, current levels are below a few months earlier in 2021 - and well below levels in 2018 and 2019.



Source: ATA


September’s month over month gain was the largest in 2021.


Interestingly, ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello noted that “It is good that tonnage rose in September, but it is important to note that this is happening because each truck is hauling more, not from an increase in the amount of equipment operated as contract carriers in the for-hire truckload market continue to shrink from the lack of new trucks and drivers."

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