Freight Shipment Volumes Plunge To Lowest In Two Years

Tyler Durden's picture

Freight shipment volumes are rather obviously seasonal, but as Bloomberg Brief notes, the Cass Freight index shows shipment volumes have slumped for four consecutive months and are back to their worst levels in two years. This is the first year-over-year contraction since the 2007-2009 Great Recession - and places the reality of the dismal Q4 GDP print in context. If that wasn't enough good news about the real economy, the cyclicality of the shipments are losing momentum (i.e. each seasonal rebound in the last three years has been weaker - just as we saw in the lead up to 2008) and freight expenditures fell in January leading to a 1.6% drop over the last year - compared to a 27.2% rise in January 2011, and 22.2% rise in January 2012. As Cass noted, these volumes will not be enough to "have a significant impact on the unemployment numbers."

Cass Shipments (upper pane) are back at two-year lows but critically the momentum of each seasonal cycle (lower pane) has been weaker and weaker in recent years...


and Freight expenditure is now negative YoY for first time in three years...


Charts: Bloomberg

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Sudden Debt's picture


Manthong's picture

None of these fundamentals matter at all to the movement of “capital” and paper pricing of assets in the new normal where all things are paper priced and fractionalized according to the “policy” of politics and bank agendas..

until they all matter a lot and all at once.  

bolen's picture


QE5 coming.




TruthInSunshine's picture

Very bullish, in fact.

People are obviously spending massive amounts of fiat to build what they want & need via the expensive, advanced 3D Printing method within the confines of their homes and small businesses.

This is good for the economy, good for the environment, and the dawning of a new manufacturing Renaissance.

insanelysane's picture

Printed out a 3D roast beef the other day.  It was tasty but I had to use a lot of gravy cause it was a bit dry.

TruthInSunshine's picture

Roast beef? You've been "horsin' around" again.

Sudden Debt's picture


I bet you'll even be able to make gold coins with them if they find something to meld gold wire...

Doomer's picture

Remember, Greedspan said the market is the economy!


I'm afraid if the S&P closes above 1525 today, there will be much more pain for shorts.  By my reckoning, the current upper channel line seems to be right around 1525, and it seems someone wants the S&P to break out instead of head for the bottom of the channel.

Of course, max pain theory says a false breakout and then lower.

johngoes's picture

Swap enough derivatives and the freight volume just becomes noise in the GDP.

Sudden Debt's picture


It's sucks out the air and you can put in twice as much.

tarsubil's picture

I'm thinking the quality of products has gone up so there are fewer returns to Amazon. This is actually bullish.

graneros's picture

You sir could have a brilliant career at the BLS.

Cult_of_Reason's picture

Similar to 2007 Head and Shoulders chart pattern.

Shizzmoney's picture

If there is any datapoint that shows China's exports (and therefore, economy) is slipping....this is it.

WMT will sweat a bit more this morning.

lunaticfringe's picture

When Chinamart, I mean Walmart said that their revenues for Feb were horrible and falling off the cliff, I knew this was good for at least a 50 point DJIA rise. This news probably good for a like amount.

lunaticfringe's picture

DJIA now up 53. Call me Nostra fucking damus. Just add POMO.

TruthInSunshine's picture

Not just Walmart, but now even Whole Foods...

Man, these FOOLS don't know...the shit is gettin' REAL...

*I've been on edge ever since they took kombucha off the shelf.

TuesdayBen's picture

You are Nostra fucking damus

DonutBoy's picture

Yes - DSXO (Discretionary Spending eXcluding Obama) is falling fast.  I don't understand, is it because my taxes just went up, my health insurance premium just went up, or my gasoline is costing me $4.70 a gallon?  Thank God there's no inflation or I'd be in the hurt locker.

orangegeek's picture

Baltic Dry Index is back at historic lows. 


Guess that means recession is over.  Prosperity for everyone.

Sudden Debt's picture

Well, it's because oil is as cheap as piss and that's whats pressing the costs? No?....

LawsofPhysics's picture

When goods and services stop crossing borders, troops will.  Same as it ever was...

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Mrs. Cog and I are readying for war. We will know it is right around the corner when the nationalistic cheering is the loudest.

LawsofPhysics's picture

Indeed.  Compared to 1907, China=Germany and U.S.=France.   As a former AMEDD officer, it hurts to have to say this about the new military model, but here we are.

TooBearish's picture

Frieght volume clearly shifting to EFTs so net effect is bullish....sarc off now....

lunaticfringe's picture

This is exceedingly bullish news! Futures are up! Go long everything!

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

The various black holes are slowly being drawn into the singularity.

<What's that sucking sound I hear?>

Winston Churchill's picture

Possibly the last thing you will probably hear.

Long :Global thermonuclear War.

youngman's picture

Noone ships anything anymore..we just send Bit money...electronic fiat...we don´t make things anymore...we have invented synthetic Derivitives...much better and eco friendly....

Tsar Pointless's picture

Yes, but did you see Kate Middleton's baby bump?

And that "Blade Runner" guy. What a terrible thing.

Oh, and the Lakers. What of the Lakers?

Priorities, bitchez.

GeezerGeek's picture

I always get a kick out of the term 'baby bump'. Why isn't it a 'fetus bump'? I asked a pro-abortion activist that question one time and she showed me her IQ by raising a single finger. I thanked her for informing me of her IQ and she turned purple. If only there had been a 'purple people' eater around... 

Doomer's picture

Didn't you know that, like quantum particles, unborn humans are effected by the mere act of observation, as well as the state of the observer.

If the observer wants the unborn human, it is a cute, cuddly miraculous "baby".

If the observer does not want the unborn human, it is a yucky, slimy, parasitic "fetus".


azzhatter's picture

I certainly hope the freight decline doesn't effect the Kardashians

yogibear's picture

Currency wars then real wars. Like the history of the last century.

firstdivision's picture

meh, show me the data after June, otherwise this is the typical cyclical movement.  

Mike in GA's picture

yeah, typical for depressions

Freddie's picture

Hope and Change.  This should be good enough for a 200 point rally in the Dow.  Still railroad robber baron Warner Beuffer still loves Obummer.   Crony facism.

DoChenRollingBearing's picture

Elections DO have consequences.  You have to play the cards you are dealt.  If economic repression is what we get, play their game (or not: by buying gold).  

But be ready to bail...  The guys at the top are not our friends.

SilverDOG's picture

US elections are a simple continuum.

Consequences preordained.

And no, one does not "have to play cards you are dealt."


Kaiser Sousa's picture





falak pema's picture

this is mind boggling, as the Squid says the world is on the verge of an epic surge; all markets on green.

how come the shipment stats dont say this? 

Has the squid lost his global compass and commercial bible?

Hulk's picture

That info is for their clients. They trade the other side, remember ???

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

When you run out of 'natural' greater fools just whip up the next batch.

<OK so that's two parts greed, one part hubris, an eye of Newt Gringrich........>

insanelysane's picture

They will be graduating from high schools and colleges in May.

falak pema's picture

imagine Harvard runs a course on leadership skills; I know where all those bright eyed MBAs end up : as GS shills selling the pot of gold at end of rainbow; all the while they take your fees and their contrarian put plays to the bank! 

Having said that, to get to the top of that infamous heap, you must have a nose that can stand any type of stench, for ten + years doing all the dirty leg work; Abacus and Abacus squared, seeing your clients burn their dreams. 

Bllankfein's smile says it all if you can get past that landmark pyramid of shitpile, branded as potential 33 degree squid meister of banksta world.

ramacers's picture

the "feel" out there in stores, on the roads,  etc. is palpable and it ain't a good one.

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Purely my personal observation, but a trip through various parts of normally busy Northern Virginia mid day Sunday was surprising for its reduced vehicle traffic and only half full mall and shopping center parking lots.