Source: U.S. Department of Transportation, Bureau of Transportation Statistics, based on data from the preliminary 2002 Commodity Flow Survey data, January 2004.
Different goods have different values, often expressed as a ratio of value per ton. While the average ratio was about $700 for all the freight transported in the United States, many products have a significantly higher ratio. The above chart depicts the 10 commodity groups having the highest value per ton. The higher the ratio, the less transport costs are playing as a factor in freight distribution and the more time and reliability prevail as prime transport factors. Pharmaceutical and electronic products have the highest ratio, well above $16,000 per ton. These products are reflective of the share transportation costs have on their final value and the length at which they are transported.