'Despite the Covid crisis, truck tonnage outperformed the broader economy as freight continued to move in the face of a myriad of challenges faced by the country,' said ATA economist Bob Costello.
'Tonnage ended last year on a high note. The index not only registered the largest monthly gain since June, but it also had the first year-over-year increase since March,' he said.
'Freight continues to be helped by strong consumption, a retail inventory restocking, and robust single-family home construction. With the stimulus checks recently issued and with a strong possibility of more in the near future, I would expect truck freight to continue rising,' Mr Costello said.
November's gain was revised down slightly to 3.2 per cent from our December 22 press release.
Compared with December 2019, the index rose 2.3 per cent. For all of 2020, compared with the same 12-month period in 2019, tonnage was down 3.3 per cent and 2019 having an annual increase of 3.3 per cent.
Trucking serves as a barometer of the US economy, representing 72.5 per cent of tonnage carried by all modes of domestic freight transportation, including manufactured and retail goods. Trucks hauled 11.84 billion tons of freight in 2019. Motor carriers collected $791.7 billion, or 80.4 per cent of total revenue earned by all transport modes.