Thursday, August 01, 2013

U.S. freight traffic up in latest week

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U.S. freight traffic sectors did better than Canadian and Mexican counterparts during the week ending July 27, 2013, the Association of American Railroads said Thursday, Aug. 1, as both freight carload traffic and intermodal volume gained ground.

U.S. freight carload traffic advanced 2.5% for the week, measured against the comparable week in 2012, while intermodal volume scored a nearly identical percentage advance, up 2.4%. Total U.S. rail traffic for the week was up 2.5%.

Six of the 10 carload commodity groups tracked by AAR posted increases compared with the same week in 2012, led once again by petroleum and petroleum products, up 23.2%. Commodities showing a decrease compared with the same week last year included grain, down 7.6%.

By contrast, Canadian freight carload volume for the week ending July 27 dipped 0.4%, while Canadian intermodal took a bigger hit, down 2.6%. Mexican freight carload volume also fell, down 1.0% compared with the same week in 2012, and Mexican intermodal retreated sharply, down 9.4%.

Combined North American freight carload volume for the 30 weeks of 2013 on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian, and Mexican railroads remained down by 0.4%, while combined North American intermodal volume was still up 3.4%, reflecting the broader year-to-date weekly trend in both categories.

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