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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

BTS' latest transportation index indicates economy still in good shape


In November, the Transportation Services Index (TSI) reached 127.6, a 0.7 percent increase compared with October and the second-straight monthly climb, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation's Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS). The November index increased 6.7 percent and 25.5 percent compared with the November 2003 and November 1996 TSIs, respectively.

The November Freight TSI of 128.9 rose 1 percent compared with October and 7 percent compared with November 2003. The monthly Passenger TSI of 125.1 dipped slightly compared with October's 125.2 index but rose 6.1 percent compared with November 2003's 117.9 TSI.

The TSIs also showed growth during the latest available six-month period, BTS said. Between May and November 2004, the TSI rose 2 percent, Freight TSI increased 1.7 percent and Passenger TSI climbed 2.9 percent compared with the same 2003 period.

The TSI is a measure of month-to-month changes in the output of services provided by for-hire transportation industries, including railroad, air, truck, inland waterways, pipelines and local transit. The index includes historic data from 1990 to the present; changes are measured against a base year of 1996.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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