The 20-stock Dow Jones Transportation Index today notched a 52-week high of $4,262.86 and has more than doubled its 52-week low price set at the stock market's recent nadir of March 2009.
The gains on Jan. 11 were paced by UPS Inc. and FedEx Corp., both of which rose strongly in the wake of UPS's announcement on Jan. 8 that it would raise fourth-quarter earnings estimates in part due to stronger demand for domestic and international shipping services.
Shares of oil tanker company Overseas Shipholding Group Inc. also rose after an analyst from the Jeffries & Co. brokerage upgraded the stock, citing an expected pickup in worldwide crude oil demand that will cause the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to increase production and boost demand for tanker services.
Despite strong gains in the past 10 months, the index is still about 1,200 points below its all-time high of $5,446.00, set in July 2007.
Of the index's 20 components, 16 are companies that are mostly or exclusively involved in the movement of goods. The other four companies are considered passenger airlines that move freight as a secondary function.