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Transportation Services (TSI) Index Rose 1.2 Percent to Record High in November from October

Transportation Services (TSI) Index Rose 1.2 Percent to Record High in November from October

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BTS 07-06
Dave Smallen
202-366-5568

Monday, February 6, 2006 - The Transportation Services Index (TSI) rose 1.2 percent in November to 112.2 (2000=100) from the October level of 110.9, turning up after a one-month decrease to reach a record high, the U.S. Department of Transportation's Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) reported today (Table 1).

BTS, a part of DOT's Research and Innovative Technology Administration, reported that the November level of 112.2 for the combined freight and passenger index was 1.7 percent higher than the November 2004 level of 110.3 (Table 2). The November level was 12.3 percent higher than the November level of the base year of 2000 (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 changes from the monthly average of the base year of 2000. Release of December numbers is scheduled for March 6.

Transportation Services Index for Freight

The TSI for freight rose 1.7 percent to 113.2 in November from the October level of 111.3, rising to a record high with the biggest one-month gain since February 2004 after two consecutive monthly declines (Table 1). The November 2005 level of 113.2 is 1.4 percent higher than the November 2004 level of 111.7 (Table 4).

Transportation Services Index for Passengers

The TSI for passengers fell 0.1 percent to 109.5 in November from the October level of 109.7, the second consecutive monthly decrease (Table 1). The November 2005 level of 109.5 is 2.4 percent higher than the November 2004 level of 107.0 (Table 5).

More on TSI

During the six months ending in November, the TSI rose 0.2 percent, the Freight TSI rose 0.4 percent and the Passenger TSI fell 0.5 percent (Table 1).

Notes: TSI numbers for August 2005 (Total, Freight, and Passenger) were revised because of revisions in the output data of the component transportation services. The August TSI is 111.2, revised from 111.5 reported in the January release. The August Freight TSI is 112.1, revised from 112.4. The August Passenger TSI is 109.0, revised from 109.1. 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. The TSI for the oldest preliminary month, August, has been revised. All other revisions are held until an annual comprehensive revision of the TSI which will be released as part of the following July 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 2005 (Seasonally Adjusted, Monthly Average of 2000 = 100)

Excel | CSV

  TSI Freight Passenger
Index Pct. Change Index Pct. Change Index Pct. Change
May 112.0 0.4 112.8 0.2 110.0 0.8
June 111.4 -0.5 112.2 -0.5 109.4 -0.5
July 111.3 -0.1 111.6 -0.5 110.4 0.9
AugustR 111.2 -0.1 112.1 0.4 109.0 -1.3
SeptemberP 111.6 0.3 111.8 -0.3 110.9 1.7
OctoberP 110.9 -0.6 111.3 -0.4 109.7 -1.1
NovemberP 112.2 1.2 113.2 1.7 109.5 -0.1

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 2000 = 100)

Excel | CSV

  TSI Percent change from same month previous year
1996 88.3 4.6
1997 94.3 6.8
1998 98.6 4.5
1999 102.8 4.3
2000 99.9 -2.8
2001 94.7 -5.3
2002 101.5 7.2
2003 103.4 1.9
2004 110.3 6.7
2005P 112.2 1.7

SOURCE: Bureau of Transportation Statistics

Note: P = preliminary

Table 3: Percent Changes in the Transportation Services Index from Previous Years to 2005 November to November

Excel | CSV

Percent change to November 2005 Since November. . . Duration in years
1.7 2004 1
8.5 2003 2
10.6 2002 3
18.6 2001 4
12.3 2000 5
9.1 1999 6
13.8 1998 7
19.0 1997 8
27.1 1996 9

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 2000 = 100)

Excel | CSV

  Freight TSI Percent change from same month previous year
1996 89.5 4.7
1997 96.3 7.5
1998 101.0 4.9
1999 104.3 3.3
2000 98.9 -5.2
2001 97.7 -1.3
2002 103.8 6.3
2003 105.1 1.2
2004 111.7 6.3
2005P 113.2 1.4

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 2000 = 100)

Excel | CSV

  Passenger TSI Percent change from same month previous year
1996 85.2 4.6
1997 89.8 5.4
1998 93.1 3.7
1999 99.1 6.5
2000 102.2 3.1
2001 87.5 -14.3
2002 96.0 9.6
2003 99.3 3.4
2004 107.0 7.8
2005P 109.5 2.4

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.