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Cass Freight Index for June shows increase in freight expenditures over May

Construction spending and factory orders, especially for durable goods, and consumer confidence all gained strength over May and June, the report said.

The Trucker News Services

7/3/2013

The Cass Freight Index for June shows an increase in freight expenditures over May while the number of shipments remained virtually flat.

The report stated that transportation continues to follow and “up-and-down track” that it has been on for the past two and a half years but that the economy has shown a more favorable trend in the last month, “which should boost activity for the transportation industry over the next several months.”

Construction spending and factory orders, especially for durable goods, and consumer confidence all gained strength over May and June, the report said.

June shipment volumes rose less than 0.1 percent from May and were 1.5 percent lower than this time last year. The June 2013 value of shipments is the lowest in the last three June time periods, however.

Cumulatively for 2013, shipments are up 5.8 percent although second-quarter growth was much slower than first-quarter growth, the report noted.

June freight payments were up 3.4 percent from May and 0.8 percent from the same period a year ago but “has more to do with heavier loadings and the commodity mix than an upward trend in rates,” the report said.

Most carriers are reporting high utilization without capacity in reserve; there is a current shortage of about 30,000 drivers and new truck purchases have only covered replacement needs, not expanded capacity, it continued.

The Trucker staff can be reached to comment on this article at editor@thetrucker.com.

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