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Rail News: Intermodal

North American intermodal industry's third-quarter volume registers largest gain since 1Q 2003, IANA says

During the third quarter, North American intermodal volume increased 9.2 percent compared with third-quarter 2003 — the 10th-straight quarter of growth and largest year-over-year gain since first-quarter 2003, according to the Intermodal Association of North America's (IANA) quarterly "Intermodal Market Trends & Statistics" report.

Container volume rose 13.3 percent — the largest quarterly gain since 2003's first quarter. Seven of the nine regions tracked by the report posted double-digit container growth.

Quarterly trailer volume increased, too, getting a boost from the 11th-straight quarter of double-digit gains in 53-foot units, IANA said.

"These primarily privately owned units topped one-third of total trailer counts for the first time since IANA began collecting intermodal statistical data in 1996, when they were only 7 percent of the total," the report states. "While slowing from its first-half pace, total trailer activity was still second best in the past four years, topped only by fourth-quarter 2003."

Quarterly 28-foot trailer volume rose 7.8 percent compared with third-quarter 2003, proving railroads are regaining less-than-truckload and parcel carriers' business, IANA said. The trailer sector's volume has increased the past four quarters after declining for more than four years.

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More News from 11/12/2004