The American Trucking Association released a report covering its advanced seasonally adjusted For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index revealing a 1.9% increase for the month of July. This is a 8.6% increase from July 2017 and a continued high performance for an index that is currently outpacing its 2017 performance by 3.8%.
The Truck Tonnage Index has been used to measure the state of the US Economy since 1973, and is calculated “based on surveys the association carries of its members.”
According the Small Business Trends, the “index measures the gross tonnage of freight transported by motor carriers in the US for a given month. The number is calculated using seasonal adjustment with a one-month lag between when the information is gathered and reported.” Essentially, when the index rises, production and consumption of consumer goods are high indicating a growing economy.
This is great news for an industry in which 11% of truck drivers fall into the independent classification, essentially qualifying them as small businesses. The most recent increase in July saw participation from a lot of these smaller truckers and, with a strong economy, should continue for the year.
There are currently around 3.5 million truck drivers in the US meaning about 380,000 are small businesses.