Traffic: A Sign of Economic Recovery

Mar 08, 2010

While the weak economy is making life difficult for many fleets, one company says the worst may be over, and they’re backing up their claim with traffic data.

Navigation service provider INRIX has released its 3rd annual INRIX National Traffic Scorecard, revealing that traffic congestion and commute times across the U.S. rose again in 2009, which may be another signal of economic recovery following the recent recession.

In fact, the number of cars on the road increased so much in 2009 due to lower fuel prices (down almost $1 from 2008) and a recovering economy that it actually outpaced the drop in commuters due to the loss of over 5 million jobs nationwide.

“So goes traffic, so goes the economy. The results suggest the holiday from increasing gridlock we’ve experienced the past few years is over,” said Bryan Mistele, INRIX president and CEO. “An excellent indicator of economic trends, traffic congestion can tell us whether businesses are shipping products, whether people are going to work, and whether shoppers are going to the mall. That said, our analysis indicates that what happens going forward in terms of increasing gridlock, much like the economy, can be summed up in one word: Jobs.”

The full report can be found here.

Photo courtesy of Burning Image under the Creative Commons License