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After booming in June, crosstie production rose 4.4 percent in July to 1.79 million units, according to the Railway Tie Association's (RTA) monthly market report. But tie purchases — which also soared in June — fell 15.3 percent to 2.29 million units on a month-over-month basis.From June's end to July's end, tie inventories nudged down from 15.77 million units to 15.27 million units, while the inventory-to-sales ratio dipped from 0.64 to 0.62.Through 2014's first seven months, tie production declined 9.2 percent year over year to 11.2 million units while purchases dipped 0.6 percent to 14.2 million units versus the same period last year.Meanwhile, 12-month rolling data through July shows purchases (at 24.7 million units) continued to climb, clocking in at an 11.6 percent annual growth rate, while production (at 20.2 million units) continued to drop, falling 11.6 percent from its year-ago level, RTA officials said.
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