Thursday, January 26, 2012

U.S. rail traffic rises again, AAR says

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U.S. freight carload traffic in early 2012 rose again, up 1.6% for the week ending Jan. 21, the Association of American Railroads reported Thursday. U.S. intermodal volume moved up even more, advancing 3.0% for the week measured against the comparable week in 2011.

 

AAR said 14 of the 20 carload commodity groups it measures posted increases compared with the same week in 2011. Leading the gainers was metallic ores, up 50.8%; also showing strength were petroleum products, up 26.8%, and motor vehicles and equipment, up 16.7%. Declining groups included grain, down 10.7%, and farm products excluding grain, down 10.5%


Canadian freight carload volume for the week ending Jan. 21 also rose, up 3.5% percent compared with the same week last year, and Canadian intermodal volume also rose, up 4.8%. Mexican freight carload volume failed to follow suit, down 11% compared with the same week last year, but Mexican intermodal rose 27.6%.

Combined North American freight carload volume for the first three weeks of 2012 on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian, and Mexican railroads was up 0.8% compared with the same period in 2011, while intermodal notched a 1.4% gain.