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The year's second full traffic week wasn't a good one for U.S. railroads. For the week ending Jan. 11, they reported 256,849 carloads, down 8.2 percent, and 235,987 intermodal loads, down 6.7 percent compared with the volumes from same week in 2013, according to the Association of American Railroads.Total combined U.S. traffic fell 7.5 percent to 492,836 units and only two of 10 carload commodity groups posted gains, including grain at 10.1 percent. Motor vehicles and parts volume dropped 22.5 percent, metallic ores and metals traffic declined 20.3 percent, and nonmetallic minerals and products loads fell 16 percent.For the week ending Jan. 11, Canadian railroads reported 66,872 carloads, down 11.8 percent, and 48,377 intermodal loads, down 10.2 percent year over year. Mexican railroads' carloads rose 5 percent to 14,563 units and their intermodal volume increased 5 percent to 9,728 units.Through 2014's first two weeks, 13 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads handled 658,920 carloads, down 4.5 percent, and 528,051 containers and trailers, down 2.6 percent compared with the same 2013 period.
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