Traffic Volume Increases in Dec. for Seventh Month
The December traffic increase from its year ago level was the seventh consecutive monthly increase starting in June 2010, and the eighth increase in the last nine months starting in March 2010.
On a moving 12-month total basis (to smooth out the monthly seasonal variations), the annual vehicle-distance traveled through December 2010 was 3,000 billion miles, the highest 12-month total since July 2008, almost two and-a-half years ago (see chart above).
Following a sharp decline in U.S. traffic volume (moving 12-month basis) that started in late 2007 and ended at a cyclical low in May 2009, traffic volume has been gradually increasing as both personal and commercial travel on U.S. roads and highways have rebounded (see graph above and truck tonnage post here). The ongoing improvements in traffic volume since the summer of 2009, which is taking place despite rising gas prices, indicate that the economic recovery is real, sustainable and gaining momentum.