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Transportation Services Index inched up in September

The Transportation Services Index (TSI) nudged up to 111.7 in September, a 0.4 percent increase from August's level and 0.9 percent rise from September 2011's mark, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation's Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS).

The Freight TSI reached 109.2, up 0.2 percent on a month-over-month basis and 0.1 percent on a year-over-year basis. The measure of output from for-hire rail, trucking, inland waterway, pipeline and air freight companies continued a pattern of little change since January, even though other indicators have shown an uptick in economic growth, BTS officials said in a prepared statement.

"The Gross Domestic Product grew 2 percent in the third quarter, up from 1.3 percent growth in the second quarter, [and] employment grew by 0.6 percent in September," they said. "Almost all freight modes experienced some increase in September, but rail freight showed a significant decline."

Meanwhile, the Passenger TSI climbed to 118.5, up 0.9 percent from August's level and 2.8 percent from September 2011's mark. The seasonally adjusted index includes output data from air, local transit and intercity rail providers.

In the third quarter, the TSI remained flat while the Freight TSI dipped 0.3 percent and Passenger TSI inched up 0.7 percent from second-quarter levels.

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