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11/23/2005



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

North American crosstie purchases rise, production falls in October


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After dropping the two previous months, North American crosstie purchases totaled 1.78 million units in October, a 34 percent increase compared with September, according to the Railway Tie Association’s (RTA) monthly market report.

October tie production dipped 6 percent to 1.77 million units compared with September. Tie inventories held steady at 14.7 million units.

During 2005’s first 10 months, tie purchases totaling 16.1 million units rose 5.5 percent, but production totaling 15.8 million units dropped 5 percent compared with the same 2004 period.

“Compared to the year-to-date averages from the past five years, purchases were up 14 percent and production was up 12 percent,” RTA officials said in the report.

Rolling 12-month data shows tie purchases increasing slightly to 18.6 million units and production edging up to 18.5 million units compared with the previous 12-month period. The inventory-to-sales ratio declined to 0.79.

“Purchases are growing at 3.7 percent,” RTA said. “Production has declined 3.7 percent, but this compares to a high level established in 2004.”


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