Thursday, June 24, 2010

Intermodal keeps pacing U.S. freight rail traffic

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Intermodal volume on U.S. freight railroads for the week ended June 19, 2010, reached its highest level since the 45th week of 2008, the Association of American Railroads reported Thursday, up 21.2% over the comparable week in 2009. Intermodal also still trailed the comparable week in 2008, but barely—down just 0.2%.


By contrast, U.S. freight railcar traffic also gained for the week compared with 2009, up 9.2%, but still trailed 2008 levels by 10%. AAR said 15 of the 19 carload commodities groups increased from the comparable week in 2009. They included metallic ores, up 108.9%, metals andmetal products, up 78. %. Only one commodity group, coke, up a slim 0.2%, posted an increase over 2008 levels.

Canadian railroads reported freight carload volume for the week up 22.3%, while intermodal gained 25.9% compared with 2009.  Mexico’s two major railroads reported freight carload volume up 15.3% from the year-ago period, while intermodal gained 49.2%.

Combined North American rail volume for the first 24 weeks of 2010 on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian, and Mexican railroads was up 10.3% from the comparable stretch of 2009; intermodal rose 12.5%. 

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