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8/21/2006



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

U.S. roads register more intermodal loads, fewer carloads in week No. 32, AAR says



The year’s 32nd week brought more intermodal loads but fewer carloads to U.S. railroads’ traffic coffers. During the week ending Aug. 12, the roads originated 249,953 trailers and containers, up 6.6 percent, and 336,568 cars, down 0.2 percent compared with the same 2005 period, according to the Association of American Railroads.

However, year-to-date data shows carloads remain ahead of 2005’s pace. Through 32 weeks, U.S. roads originated 10.8 million carloads, up 1.5 percent, and 7.5 million trailers and containers, up 6.4 percent compared with the same 2005 period. Total estimated volume of 1.06 trillion ton-miles rose 2.7 percent.

Week 32 wasn’t a particularly good one for Canadian railroads. During the week ending Aug. 12, the roads’ originated carloads dropped 2.7 percent to 72,143 units and intermodal volume decreased 1.8 percent to 44,708 units compared with 2005’s 32nd week. Through 32 weeks, Canadian railroads originated 2.4 million carloads, down 1.4 percent, and 1.4 million trailers and containers, up 5.9 percent compared with the same period last year.

On a combined cumulative-volume basis through 32 weeks, 13 reporting U.S. and Canadian railroads originated 13.1 million carloads, up 0.9 percent, and 8.9 million trailers and containers, up 6.3 percent compared with 2005’s first 32 weeks.

Meanwhile, Kansas City Southern de México S.A. de C.V. (KCSM) increased total carload and intermodal traffic in week 32. Carloads rose 3.2 percent to 11,476 units and intermodal loads increased 4.2 percent to 4,255 units compared with the same week last year. Through 32 weeks, KCSM’s carloads totaling 360,097 units decreased 5.2 percent and intermodal loads totaling 124,008 units dropped 6.3 percent compared with 2005’s first 32 weeks.


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