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10/7/2013


Rail News: Maintenance Of Way
Tie purchases and production posted gains in August, RTA says



After rebounding in July, crosstie purchases continued to recover in August, climbing 12 percent from July's level to 2.47 million units, according to the Railway Tie Association (RTA).

Tie production increased for the second-start month, as well, rising 6 percent from July's mark to 1.9 million units. The inventory-to-sales ratio fell from 0.79 in July to 0.74 in August due to an increase in purchases accompanied by a drop in inventories, RTA officials said in their monthly tie market report. Since peaking in January, tie inventories — which totaled 17 million units at August's end — have fallen 15 percent.

Through 2013's first eight months, tie purchases pulled even with year-ago levels at 16.6 million units while production, which totaled 14.3 million units, remained down 17 percent year over year, RTA officials said.

Meanwhile, 12-month rolling data through August showed production declined 11.6 percent (to 22.3 million units) and purchases dipped 2.1 percent (to 23.1 million units) versus the prior 12-month period.

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