Thursday, February 28, 2013

Same mix for U.S. freight traffic, AAR reports

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U.S. freight traffic for the week ending Feb. 23, 2013 remained mixed, the Association of American Railroads said Thursday. U.S. freight carload traffic slipped 1.2% measured against the comparable week in 2012, counterbalanced by a 4.1% gain in U.S. intermodal volume during the week compared to last year.

AAR noted total U.S. traffic for the week, at 516,142 carloads and intermodal units, was up 4.1% compared with the same week last year. Total U.S. traffic for the first eight weeks of 2013 was up 0.6% from last year, AAR said.

Four of the 10 carload commodity groups AAR measures posted increases compared with the same week in 2012, led by petroleum products, up 66.4%. Commodities showing a decrease included grain, down 17.3%, and metallic ores and metals, down 10%.
Canadian freight carload volume for the week ending Feb. 23 was up 1.3%, while Canadian intermodal volume advanced 12.6%. Mexican freight carload volume also rose strongly, up 12.4% compared with last year, while Mexican intermodal did likewise, up 12.3%.

Combined North American freight carload volume for the eight weeks of 2013 on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian, and Mexican railroads was down 2.8% measured against the comparable period in 2012. Combined North American intermodal volume was up 6.8% compared with last year.