AAR: 45 Straight Weeks of U.S. Traffic Downturn

Written by Andrew Corselli, Managing Editor
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The Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported U.S. rail traffic for the week ended Nov. 9, 2019, and, for this week, total U.S. weekly rail traffic was 515,269 carloads and intermodal units, down 5.9% compared with the same week last year.

More “sensible actions” are certainly needed, as total carloads for the week ended Nov. 9 were 248,905 carloads, down 5.1% compared with the same week in 2018, while U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 266,364 containers and trailers, down 6.7% compared to 2018.

One of the 10 carload commodity groups posted an increase compared with the same week in 2018. It was grain, up 342 carloads, to 21,855. Commodity groups that posted decreases compared with the same week in 2018 included commodities such as coal, down 9,577 carloads, to 75,180; miscellaneous carloads, down 843 carloads, to 10,944; and petroleum and petroleum products, down 741 carloads, to 12,617.

For the first 45 weeks of 2019, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 11,337,628 carloads, down 4.3% from the same point last year; and 11,988,234 intermodal units, down 4.6% from last year. Total combined U.S. traffic for the first 45 weeks of 2019 was 23,325,862 carloads and intermodal units, a decrease of 4.4% compared to last year.

North American rail volume for the week ending November 9, 2019, on 12 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads totaled 352,176 carloads, down 4.8% compared with the same week last year, and 352,712 intermodal units, down 6.5% compared with last year. Total combined weekly rail traffic in North America was 704,888 carloads and intermodal units, down 5.6%. North American rail volume for the first 45 weeks of 2019 was 31,852,518 carloads and intermodal units, down 3.4% compared with 2018.

Canadian railroads reported 83,174 carloads for the week, down 5.5%, and 68,361 intermodal units, down 5.9% compared with the same week in 2018. For the first 45 weeks of 2019, Canadian railroads reported cumulative rail traffic volume of 6,824,664 carloads, containers and trailers, up 0.4%.

Mexican railroads saw a slight uptick, as it reported 20,097 carloads for the week, up 2.8% compared with the same week last year, and 17,987 intermodal units, down 5.5%. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first 45 weeks of 2019 was 1,701,992 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, down 2.7% from the same point last year.

Categories: Class I, Freight, Intermodal, News, Short Lines & Regionals Tags: , ,