Freight shipments rise 1.2% in May

July 12, 2013

(Photo: Dennis Bogers / Flickr)
(Photo: Dennis Bogers / Flickr)

The amount of freight that the for-hire transportation industry carried rose 1.2 percent in May, according to data released Wednesday by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS).

The data, from this month’s BTS Freight Transportation Services Index (TSI), measures the month-to-month changes in freight shipments according to mode of transportation. The rise in these figures follows a one-month decline in freight shipments.

USDOT attributes the increase in freight transportation to growth in in shipments by truck and rail, as well as a strengthening general economy. A 6.8-percent rise in housing starts was also important to the rise in freight tonnage.

The 114.3 index in May follows April’s 112.9 index (revised from 112.4). May’s level of freight shipments is 20.6 percent higher than the April 2009 low and 0.8 percent lower than the all-time high of 115.2 in December 2011.

The May 2013 Freight TSI is up 1.7 percent year-over-year.

For more information and charts about the May 2013 Freight TSI, visit

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