Cass Freight Index Summary

June 20, 2023


Freight Market Remains Unstable in 2023

The freight market continues to experience significant challenges and instability in 2023. While there are signs of gradual improvement, the issues from previous years are far from fully resolved. According to the Cass Freight Index, year-over-year shipments have declined by 5.5% since May 2022, and expenditures have dropped by 15.7% during the same period.

These numbers represent the most substantial year-over-year decline in both shipments and expenditures in the past three years, as well as the largest drop in the 18-year history of the Cass Freight Index.

Despite this decline, there was a slight improvement from April to May 2023, with shipments increasing by 1.9%. However, this increase is smaller than the typical growth observed during this period, and it is not substantial enough to signal a complete recovery

.Looking ahead, Cass Freight Index data suggests that overall expenditures for 2023 may decline by nearly 20%, a significant increase from the initial forecast of approximately 10%. This revised projection highlights the continued uncertainty and challenges facing the freight industry.

The Cass Freight Index relies on data from freight bills totaling approximately $44 billion in annual payables, making it a reliable source for assessing the state of the freight market. While the industry shows some signs of stabilization, it remains in a state of flux, with the full resolution of its issues still unclear.


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