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1/23/2004



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

AAR traffic report: Good news for U.S., Canadian roads, bad news for TFM



Traffic-wise, U.S. railroads had a much better second week in 2004 compared with the first. During the week ending Jan. 17, the roads' increased carload and intermodal moves 5.0 percent and 6.9 percent, respectively, compared with the same week in 2003, according to Association of American Railroads data released Jan. 22.

AAR estimated U.S. roads' total volume at 30.2 billion ton-miles, up 6.3 percent compared with last year.

During 2004's first two weeks, U.S. roads moved 656,848 carloads, up 0.9 percent, and 388,174 trailers and containers, up 4.0 percent, compared with 2003's first two weeks.

Canadian railroads also made traffic strides last week, increasing carload and intermodal moves 5.8 percent and 4.3 percent, respectively, compared with the same 2003 period.

During 2004's first two weeks, Canadian roads moved 127,467 carloads, up 4.1 percent, and 79,204 trailers and containers, up 0.4 percent, compared with 2003's first two weeks.

On a combined cumulative-volume basis during the two weeks, 15 reporting U.S. and Canadian roads moved 784,315 carloads, up 1.4 percent, and 467,378 trailers and containers, up 3.4 percent, compared with last year.

In Mexico, TFM S.A. de C.V.'s carload and intermodal traffic decreased 6.4 percent and 18.1 percent, respectively, last week compared with the same 2003 period. TFM's traffic tally was even worse during 2004's first two weeks — carloads dropped 9.6 percent and intermodal units decreased 22.7 percent compared with last year.


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