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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Intermodal volumes up for U.S., Canadian railroads in Week 26

Intermodal traffic continued to move at a busy pace during the week ending July 4, as U.S. railroads logged 255,015 containers and trailers, a 12.3 percent increase compared with the same week in 2014, the Association of American Railroads reported yesterday.

The intermodal volume also lifted total U.S. rail traffic for the week to 506,284 units, up 1.7 percent. Total carload traffic continued its slide downward, dropping 7.1 percent to 251,269 for the week compared with a year ago.

Six of 10 carload commodity groups posted an increase, including miscellaneous carloads, up 6.2 percent to 8,287 carloads; nonmetallic minerals, up 5.4 percent to 33,876 carloads; and farm products, up 3.7 percent to 15,219 carloads. Commodity groups that posted decreases included coal, down 18.5 percent to 82,924 carloads; metallic ores and metals, down 10.6 percent to 23,893 carloads; and petroleum and petroleum products, down 8.5 percent to 13,684 carloads.

For the first 26 weeks of 2015, U.S. railroads reported total combined traffic of 14,041,881 carloads and intermodal units, down 0.8 percent. Cumulative carloads declined 3.9 percent during that period, while intermodal volume rose 2.7 percent.

Canadian railroads recorded 73,489 carloads for the week, a 5.1 percent decrease. However, their intermodal volume rose 4.3 percent to 59,804 units. For the 26-week period, Canadian railroads posted cumulative volume of 3,592,844 carloads, containers and trailers, up 2.3 percent.

Mexican railroads reported lower traffic in both the carload and intermodal categories for the week: Carload traffic fell 5.2 percent to 15,189, while intermodal dropped 8.2 percent to 10,337 units. But for the first 26 weeks of the year, Mexican railroads experienced a 2.5 percent uptick in traffic with a cumulative volume of 697,767 carloads and intermodal units.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 7/9/2015