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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

U.S. rail traffic steady in week 45

U.S. railroads' carload traffic was steady at a 0.5 percent increase to 272,131 units during the week ending Nov. 12, according to Association of American Railroads (AAR) data.

Intermodal volume for the week fell 1.4 percent to 268,996 containers and trailers compared with the same week in 2015. Total U.S. rail traffic for the week topped off at 541,127 carloads and intermodal units, down 0.5 percent compared with the same week last year, according to an AAR press release.

Six of the 10 carload commodity groups that AAR tracks weekly posted an increase compared with the same week last year. They included grain, up 23 percent to 26,817 carloads; miscellaneous carloads, up 5.4 percent to 9,566 carloads; and metallic ores and metals, up 5.2 percent to 21,806 carloads.

Commodity groups that posted decreases compared with the same week a year ago included petroleum and petroleum products, down 15.4 percent to 11,146 carloads; forest products, down 5.6 percent to 9,677 carloads; and motor vehicles and parts, down 5.4 percent to 17,227 carloads.

Canadian railroads posted higher carload and intermodal volume during the week compared with last year. Carload activity increased 8.6 percent to 80,975 units, while intermodal rose 1.1 percent to 60,237 containers and trailers.

Mexican railroads posted 14,726 carloads for the week, down 0.4 percent compared with the same week last year, and 10,494 intermodal units, down 8.2 percent.

For the first 45 weeks of 2016, U.S. railroads logged 23,048,146 carloads and intermodal units, a decrease of 6.3 percent compared to last year. Canadian railroads posted cumulative rail traffic volume of 5,908,489 carloads, containers and trailers, down 4.7 percent. Mexican railroads reported cumulative volume of 1,212,088 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, down 2.1 percent from the same point last year.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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