July still no salvation for traffic

Written by Andrew Corselli, Managing Editor
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AAR Senior Vice President Policy and Economics John T. Gray.

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) recently reported U.S. rail traffic for the week ended July 13, 2019, and it appears that it’s still “in the doldrums.”

As we’ve recently seen, total U.S. weekly rail traffic for this week was 527,908 carloads and intermodal units, down 5.6% compared with the same week last year.

Total carloads for the week ended July 13 were 260,762 carloads, down 4% compared with the same week in 2018, while U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 267,146 containers and trailers, down 7.2% compared to 2018.

Two of the 10 carload commodity groups posted an increase compared with the same week in 2018. They were petroleum and petroleum products, up 1,140 carloads, to 13,098; and chemicals, up 105 carloads, to 32,859. Commodity groups that posted decreases compared with the same week in 2018 included commodities such as coal, down 3,858 carloads, to 80,874; nonmetallic minerals, down 2,728 carloads, to 36,661; and motor vehicles and parts, down 2,005 carloads, to 13,080.

For the first 28 weeks of 2019, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 7,033,739 carloads, down 3.1% from the same point last year; and 7,419,107 intermodal units, down 3.5% from last year. Total combined U.S. traffic for the first 28 weeks of 2019 was 14,452,846 carloads and intermodal units, a decrease of 3.3% compared to last year.

North American rail volume for the week ending July 13, 2019, on 12 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads totaled 363,010 carloads, down 3.2% compared with the same week last year, and 356,757 intermodal units, down 4.6% compared with last year. Total combined weekly rail traffic in North America was 719,767 carloads and intermodal units, down 3.9%. North American rail volume for the first 28 weeks of 2019 was 19,712,630 carloads and intermodal units, down 2.2% compared with 2018.

Canadian railroads reported 81,572 carloads for the week, down 1.3%, and 71,573 intermodal units, up 5.1% compared with the same week in 2018. For the first 28 weeks of 2019, Canadian railroads reported cumulative rail traffic volume of 4,219,161 carloads, containers and trailers, up 2.1%.

Mexican railroads reported 20,676 carloads for the week, down 0.9% compared with the same week last year, and 18,038 intermodal units, up 0.3%. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first 28 weeks of 2019 was 1,040,623 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, down 3.4% from the same point last year.

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