Thursday, April 24, 2014

AAR: North American carloads flat, intermodal up

Written by  William C. Vantuono, Editor-in-Chief
Combined North American rail volume for the first 16 weeks of 2014 on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian, and Mexican railroads totaled 5,898,862 carloads, flat compared with the same point last year, and 4,984,696 intermodal trailers and containers, up 4.5% compared with last year, the Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported on Thursday, April 24, 2014.

The AAR reported increased U.S. rail traffic for the week ending April 19, 2014, with 290,713 total U.S. carloads, up 5.1% compared with the same week last year. Total U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 259,113 units, up 7.6% compared with the same week last year. Total combined U.S. weekly rail traffic was 549,826 carloads and intermodal units, up 6.3% compared with the same week last year.

Six of the 10 carload commodity groups posted increases compared with the same week in 2013, including grain with 21,582 carloads, up 36.9%, and petroleum and petroleum products with 15,252 carloads, up 12.4%. The commodities showing a decrease compared with the same week last year were led by metallic ores and metals with 22,835 carloads, down 8.9%.

For the first 16 weeks of 2014, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 4,484,785 carloads, up 1.8% compared with the same point last year, and 3,987,578 intermodal units, up 5% from last year. Total combined U.S. traffic for the first 16 weeks of 2014 was 8,472,363 carloads and intermodal units, up 3.3% from last year.

Canadian railroads reported 81,698 carloads for the week, down 2.8%, and 59,157 intermodal units, up 6.6% compared with the same week in 2013. For the first 16 weeks of 2014, Canadian railroads reported cumulative volume of 1,174,282 carloads, down 6.5% from the same point last year, and 846,505 intermodal units, up 3.1% from last year.

Mexican railroads reported 13,166 carloads for the week, down 11.9% compared with the same week last year, and 8,144 intermodal units, down 15.7%. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first 16 weeks of 2014 was 239,795 carloads, up 1.1% from the same point last year, and 150,613 intermodal units, down 0.4% from last year.