Thursday, September 09, 2010

AAR: Carload traffic continues showing strength

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The Association of American Railroads Thursday said U.S. weekly rail carload freight volume set a new 2010 record for the second consecutive week, with carloads for the week ended September 4 up 6.9% over the comparable week one year ago.

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Moreover, carload freight was “at comparable levels to the same week in 2008,” AAR said, noting the 2008 comparison week included the Labor Day holiday while the corresponding weeks in both 2010 and 2009 did not.

Thirteen of the 19 carload commodity groups increased from the comparable week in 2009, with metallic ores and metals and metal products continuing to post significant increases, up 57.1% and 32.4%, respectively. Nine carload commodity groups posted an increase over the 2008 comparison week.

U.S. intermodal traffic was up 18% from the same week in 2009, and also up 18% compared with 2008. 

Canadian freight carload volume rose 19.6% for the week compared with last year, while intermodal gained 13.8%. Mexican freight carload volume advanced 24.7% from 2009 levels, while intermodal rose 14.1%.

Combined North American rail volume for the first 35 weeks of 2010 on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian, and Mexican railroads was up 10% from 2009, while intermodal was up 15%.