Class I

FreightWaves SONAR: Railroads Pin Hopes on Auto Manufacturing as U.S. Carloads Sustain Record Decline

The Class I railroads are closely watching the restart of North American automotive production, hoping that the slow ramp-up will not only grow motor vehicle volumes but also improve demand for supplies such as steel and plastics, according to executives at recent investor conferences. However, a key unknown variable is whether consumer demand will lift volumes for automobiles and other goods, executives said.

Does Rebuilding Locomotives Beat Buying New?

Ever check out the list prices of brand-new main line diesel-electric locomotives? They are expensive, about $3 million each. Are you mesmerized by the horsepower quoted? Nah! You want tractive effort. Hauling heavy, long freight trains is the North American business model. You need to purchase tractive effort.

FreightWaves SONAR: Container-Import Roller Coaster: Down, Up, Down … Up?

U.S. container imports are on a wild ride. They plunged in March after the initial coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, China. They bounced back in April when delayed bookings were loaded after China came back online. Beginning in May, they sank again as container carriers “blanked” (canceled) sailings. Now, it looks like there could be at least some momentum in the positive direction.

NS Announces Finance Division Changes

Norfolk Southern Corporation (NS) announced organizational changes within its Finance Division, effective June 1, 2020. Jason Zampi will become Vice President of Financial Planning and Analysis, a new department. Clyde “Jake” Allison, Jr. will become Vice President and Controller, with responsibility for all accounting functions. Chris Neikirk will become Vice President of Treasury and Investor Relations. The three will report to NS Chief Financial Officer Mark George.

Tough Love, Because Competition Beckons

On May 12, IANA (Intermodal Association of North America) offered an interesting look at the North American rail intermodal sector. The webinar featured technical slides shared by Bloomberg Senior Analyst Transportation & Logistics Lee Klaskow and TTX Vice President Fleet Management Company Pat Casey. TTX market development experts John Woodcock and Peter Wolff also participated.