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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

US freight-rail traffic fell 11.2% in Week 14


U.S. rail volumes fell 11.2% to 451,336 carloads and intermodal units in the week ending April 8 compared with the same week in 2022, according to Association of American Railroads data.

The railroads logged 225,669 carloads, a 4.6% decrease, and 225,667 containers and trailers, a 17% decrease, compared with year-ago levels.

Four of the 10 commodity groups that AAR tracks every week logged traffic increases. They included motor vehicles and parts, up 7.3%; petroleum and petroleum products, up 5.8%; and metallic ores and metals, up 2.6%.

Commodities that posted decreases included grain (17.1%), coal (5.6%) and chemicals (10.3%).

Meanwhile, Canadian railroads reported 78,797 carloads for the week, a 0.3% decrease, and 58,922 intermodal units, a 21.9% decrease. Mexican railroads posted 21,007 carloads, an 11.2% decrease, and 8,711 intermodal units, a 47.8% decrease.

For the first 14 weeks of 2023 compared with the same period in 2022:

• U.S. railroads reported 6,468,391 carloads and intermodal units, down 5.8%;
• Canadian railroads reported 1,954,736 carloads, containers and trailers, up 0.9%; and
• Mexican railroads reported 527,184 carloads, containers and trailers, up 2.4%.