AAR said 10 of the 20 carload commodity groups it tracks posted increases during the week, including petroleum products, up 55.7%, farm products excluding grain, up 26.5%, and lumber and wood products, up 20.8%. Declining commodities included metallic ores, down 17.5%, and waste and nonferrous scrap, down 14.5%. Coal fell 6.7% for the week compared with one year ago.
By contrast, Canadian freight carload volume for the week was up 3.9% compared with the same week last year, and Canadian intermodal volume also rose, up 3.2%. Mexican freight carload volume edged down 0.1%, while Mexican intermodal advanced 32.6% for the week compared with a year ago.
Combined North American freight carload volume for the first 34 weeks of 2012 on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian, and Mexican railroads was down 1.3% compared with the same point last year, while combined intermodal was up 4.6% compared with the comparable period in 2011.