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.