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Transportation Services Index (TSI) Index Rose 0.7 Percent in November from October

Transportation Services Index (TSI) Index Rose 0.7 Percent in November from October

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BTS 07-05
Dave Smallen
202-366-5568

Monday, February 7, 2005 - The Transportation Services Index (TSI) rose 0.7 percent in November to 127.6 (1996=100) for the second consecutive monthly rise, the U.S. Department of Transportation's Bureau of Transportation Statistics reported today (Table 1).

The November level of 127.6 for the combined freight and passenger index was 6.7 percent higher than the November 2003 level of 119.6 (Table 2). The November 2004 level was 25.5 percent higher than the November level of the base year of 1996 (Table 3).

TSI is a single seasonally adjusted index of the month-to-month changes in the output of services provided by the for-hire transportation industries, including railroad, air, truck, inland waterways, pipeline, and local transit.

The index includes historic data from 1990 to the present. The TSI is still under development and is considered experimental. The index measures change from the monthly average for the base year of 1996. The next release is scheduled for March 7.

Transportation Services Index for Freight

The TSI for freight rose 1.0 percent to 128.9 in November from the October level of 127.6 for the second consecutive monthly rise (Table 1). The November 2004 level of 128.9 is 7.0 percent higher than the November 2003 level of 120.4 (Table 4).

Transportation Services Index for Passengers

The TSI for passengers remained virtually unchanged at 125.1 in November from the October level of 125.2 (Table 1). The November 2004 level of 125.1 is 6.1 percent higher than the November 2003 level of 117.9 (Table 5).

More on TSI

During the six months ending in November, the TSI rose 2.0 percent, the Freight TSI rose 1.7 percent and the Passenger TSI rose 2.9 percent.

Note: TSI numbers for August (Total, Freight, and Passenger) were revised because of revisions in the output data of the component transportation services. The August TSI is 125.5, revised from the 124.5 reported in the January release. The August Freight TSI is 126.4, revised from the 125.6 reported in the January release. The August Passenger TSI is 124.0, revised from the 122.3 reported in the January release. The TSI for September, October and November are preliminary.

TSI revision policy: TSI is updated monthly with the latest three months' index numbers considered preliminary. Each month BTS releases the latest preliminary TSI, and replaces the oldest preliminary TSI with a revised TSI. All other revisions are held until an annual comprehensive revision of the TSI which will be released as part of the following June TSI release. More information about the revision policy is available at http://www.bts.gov/xml/tsi/src/index.xml.

Table 1: Percent changes in the Transportation Services Index by Month Since May 2004 (Seasonally Adjusted)

Excel | CSV

  TSI Freight Passenger
Index Pct. Change Index Pct. Change Index Pct. Change
May 125.1 -0.2 126.7 -0.3 121.6 -0.2
June 125.5 0.4 126.6 -0.1 123.4 1.5
July 126.0 0.4 127.2 0.5 123.9 0.4
AugustR 125.5 -0.4 126.4 -0.6 124.0 0.1
SeptemberP 125.1 -0.4 126.2 -0.1 122.8 -0.9
OctoberP 126.7 1.3 127.6 1.1 125.2 1.9
NovemberP 127.6 0.7 128.9 1.0 125.1 0.0

SOURCE: Bureau of Transportation Statistics

Note: P = preliminary; R = revised

Table 2: Percent changes in the Transportation Services Index from Year-to-Year November TSI (Monthly average of 1996 = 100)

Excel | CSV

  TSI Percent change from previous year
1996 101.7 4.4
1997 109.0 7.2
1998 113.9 4.4
1999 118.7 4.2
2000 115.5 -2.7
2001 108.9 -5.6
2002 116.6 7.0
2003 119.6 2.5
2004P 127.6 6.7

SOURCE: Bureau of Transportation Statistics

Note: P = preliminary

Table 3: Percent Changes in the Transportation Services Index from Previous Years to 2004 November to November

Excel | CSV

Percent change to November 2004 Since November . . . Duration
6.7 2003 One Year
9.4 2002 Two Years
17.2 2001 Three Years
10.5 2000 Four Years
7.5 1999 Five Years
12.1 1998 Six Years
17.0 1997 Seven Years
25.5 1996 Eight Years

SOURCE: Bureau of Transportation Statistics

Table 4: Percent changes in the Freight Transportation Services Index from Year-to-Year November Freight TSI (Monthly average of 1996 = 100)

Excel | CSV

  Freight TSI Percent change from previous year
1996 102.3 4.6
1997 110.6 8.1
1998 115.7 4.6
1999 119.3 3.1
2000 113.2 -5.1
2001 111.3 -1.7
2002 118.5 6.5
2003 120.4 1.6
2004P 128.9 7.0

SOURCE: Bureau of Transportation Statistics

Note: P = preliminary

Table 5: Percent changes in the Passenger Transportation Services Index from Year-to-Year November Passenger TSI (Monthly average of 1996 = 100)

Excel | CSV

  Passenger TSI Percent change from previous year
1996 100.4 4.0
1997 105.8 5.4
1998 110.1 4.0
1999 117.6 6.8
2000 121.4 3.2
2001 103.8 -14.5
2002 112.5 8.4
2003 117.9 4.8
2004P 125.1 6.1

SOURCE: Bureau of Transportation Statistics

Note: P = preliminary

Brief Explanation of the TSI

The Transportation Services Index (TSI) is a measure of the month-to-month changes in the output of services provided by the for-hire transportation industries.

The TSI tells us how the output of transportation services has increased or decreased from month to month. The index can be examined together with other economic indicators to produce a better understanding of the current and future course of the economy. The movement of the index over time can be compared with other economic measures to understand the relationship of changes in transportation output to changes in Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

The TSI is still under development and is therefore considered experimental. It is being examined for refinements in data sources, methodologies and interpretations.

The freight transportation index consists of:

For hire trucking,
Railroad freight services (including rail based intermodal shipments such as containers on flat cars),
Inland waterways transportation,
Pipeline transportation (including principally petroleum and petroleum products and natural gas), and
Air freight.

The index does not include international or coastal waterborne movements, private trucking, courier services, or the US Postal Service.

The passenger transportation index consists of:

Local transit,
Intercity passenger rail, and
Passenger air transportation.

The index does not include intercity bus, sight seeing services, ferry services, taxi service, private automobile usage, or bicycling and other non-motorized transportation.