Thursday, November 14, 2013

Another good week for U.S. freight rail traffic

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U.S. freight rail traffic for the week ending Nov. 9, 2013 continued to gain ground measured against a year ago, continuing a robust fourth-quarter surge, the Association of American Railroads reported Thursday, Nov. 14.

U.S. freight carload traffic advanced 4.9% for the week measured against the comparable week in 2012. U.S. intermodal volume rose 6.3%. Total U.S. up 4.9 percent compared with the same week last year. Total combined U.S. weekly rail traffic gained 5.6% compared with the same week last year.

Eight of the 10 carload commodity groups AAR measures on a weekly basis posted increases compared with the same week in 2012, not surprisingly including petroleum and petroleum products, up 25%. Also gaining ground: grain, up 21.3%, and motor vehicles and parts, up 20.5%. Coal, by contrast, was in the minus column, though just barely, down 0.6%.

Canadian freight carload traffic also rose, up 11.5% compared with the same week in 2012, while Canadian intermodal volume advanced 5.2%. Mexican freight carload traffic eked a modes 0.8% gain, but Mexican intermodal volume fell 7.8%.

Combined North American freight carload volume for the 45 weeks of 2013 on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian, and Mexican railroads was up 0.3% measured against the comparable period in 2012. Combined North American intermodal volume for the period was up 4.0%.