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12/26/2012


Rail News: Rail Industry Trends
RTA: Tie production, purchases slowed last month



Crosstie production exhibited a normal seasonal slow-down in November, declining 17 percent to 1.9 million units compared with October's level, according to the Railway Tie Association's (RTA) monthly market report.

Tie purchases fell 23 percent in November to 1.4 million units. Production had exceeded purchases in nine of the past 13 months leading to November, RTA officials said in the report. The tie inventory rose 2.8 percent last month to 19 million units.

Through 2012's first 11 months, tie production increased 13 percent to 23.6 million units and purchases rose 6 percent to 21.7 million units.

Meanwhile, 12-month rolling data showed production's pace remained "a positive" 12 percent at 25.4 million while purchases — which had peaked in July — still were growing at a 4 percent annual rate at 23 million, RTA officials said. Inventories swelled by more than 14 percent in the 12-month period and the inventory-to-sales ratio increased from 0.75 to 0.83.

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