NAFTA truck freight in 2018 up more than 7 percent from 2017

March 26, 2019

Tyson Fisher


Annual North American Free Trade Agreement numbers are in for 2018, and cross-border freight was up compared with 2017 across the board. In fact, the only decline in any category was NAFTA freight in two states: Kansas and West Virginia.

Trucking NAFTA freight in 2018 totaled to $772.2 billion, an increase of more than 7 percent from the previous year. Nearly 63 percent of cross-border freight was carried by trucks.

Rail carried the second the most freight at nearly 15 percent. Total rail freight value increased by nearly 3 percent. By value, vessel freight went up by nearly 28 percent, pipeline increased by nearly 13 percent and air freight was up nearly 7 percent.

Total NAFTA freight last year totaled to $1.23 trillion, a nearly 8 percent increase. Canada freight increased by 6 percent and Mexico freight was up nearly 10 percent. The value of Canadian trucking freight increased by nearly 4 percent and Mexican freight hauled by trucks went up more than 10 percent.

Map showing NAFTS 2018 truck freight vs. 2017
NAFTA truck freight in 2018 compared with 2017. Blue states experienced an increase, whereas orange states reported a decrease.

By state, 46 of 48 of the continental United States experienced increases, with Louisiana’s increase of more than 33 percent leading the country. Kansas and West Virginia recorded the only losses at 0.4 percent 8 percent, respectively.

Specific to NAFTA truck freight, all but eight states reported an increase. Wyoming experienced the largest NAFTA truck freight increase at 36 percent. Decreases in truck freight ranged from 0.2 percent in both Maryland and Utah to more than 14 percent in Delaware.

By commodity group, truck freight increased in 14 of 16 categories, with mineral products experiencing the largest gain at 22.5 percent. Animals/animal products and stone/glass were the only commodity group decreases at 1.2 percent each. In the animals/animal products group, the largest decrease by specific commodity was live animals, down 6 percent compared with 2017. Decreases in stone/glass came specifically from a 7.7 percent decline in pearls/stones/metals/imitation jewelry.