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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

AAR: U.S. rail traffic down 5.4 percent in week 36


U.S. railroads posted a 5.4 percent decrease in rail traffic for the week ending Sept. 10 compared with traffic during the same week a year ago, the Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported yesterday.

Total carload traffic for U.S. railroads dropped 6 percent to 252,627 units. Intermodal traffic fell 4.8 percent to 230,267 containers and trailers compared with the same week in 2015.

Three of 10 carload commodity groups that AAR tracks on a weekly basis posted increases during the week, with the strongest gains in grain, which was up 26.3 percent to 22,599 carloads. Also posting increases were miscellaneous carloads, up 16.1 percent to 8,593 carloads; and nonmetallic minerals, up 2 percent to 35,407 carloads.

Petroleum and related products, down 26.5 percent to 10,452 carloads, led the commodity groups reporting decreases for the week. Coal fell 15.7 percent to 87,058 carloads; and metallic ores and metals were down 4.5 percent to 19,644 carloads.

Canada's railroads reported 72,012 carloads, down 0.8 percent, and 56,374 intermodal units, up 1.1 percent compared with the same week in 2015. Mexican railroads logged 14,704 carloads for the week, down 7 percent compared with the same week last year, and 11,870 intermodal units, down 8.6 percent.

For the first 36 weeks of 2016:
• U.S. railroads reported total combined traffic of 18,194,144 carloads and intermodal units, a decrease of 7.1 percent;
• Canadian railroads posted cumulative rail traffic volume of 4,634,100 carloads, containers and trailers, down 6.7 percent; and
• Mexican railroads recorded a cumulative volume of 966,751 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, down 2.4 percent from the same period last year.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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