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TET 2017 - About this Report

About this Report

Transportation plays a vital role in the American economy: it makes economic activity possible, and serves as a major economic activity itself. Transportation Economic Trends 2017 highlights important trends in transportation and the economy, and explains related economic concepts and data sources for a general audience.


The report has eight chapters:

  • Chapter 1 introduces the Transportation Services Index, a monthly summary of freight and passenger movement.
  • Chapter 2 explains what transportation contributes to the American economy.
  • Chapter 3 examines the costs that households and businesses pay for transportation.
  • Chapter 4 analyzes transportation-related employment.
  • Chapter 5 explains and examines trends in transportation productivity.
  • Chapter 6 analyzes household spending on transportation goods and services.
  • Chapter 7 examines government transportation spending and revenue.
  • Chapter 8 discusses transportation assets and infrastructure.

Each chapter uses the latest data available as of June 15, 2017 unless otherwise noted.

Improvements to the 2017 Edition

Transportation Economic Trends 2017 builds on the 2016 edition with updated data and new content, including:

  • An expanded discussion of transportation productivity measures and how the transportation sector has contributed to economic growth in the United States (chapter 5);
  • National data measuring the value of and investment in transportation assets (chapter 8);
  • Additional explanations of economic concepts and data sources;
  • A glossary of economic and transportation terms.
Updated: Friday, February 16, 2018