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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Intermodal continues to lead weekly rail traffic

U.S. railroads logged 551,181 carloads and intermodal units for the week ending July 18, which marked a 2.8 percent decrease compared with data from same week last year, according to the Association of American Railroads' weekly rail traffic report.

Total carloads for the week decreased 7.3 percent to 277,331 carloads, while weekly intermodal volume nudged up 2.3 percent to 273,850 containers and trailers, continuing a year-long trend of stronger intermodal performance.

Volumes in four of 10 carload commodity groups increased compared with the same week in 2014, including miscellaneous carloads, up 6.3 percent; farm products, up 1.4 percent; and chemicals up 1.1 percent.

Shipments of petroleum and petroleum products plummeted 20.2 percent during the week. Other commodity groups that posted decreases included metallic ores, which fell 11.7 percent, and coal, which dropped 11.6 percent.

For the first 28 weeks of 2015, cumulative volume on U.S. railroads totaled 7,730,662 carloads, reflecting a 4.1 percent decrease from the same point last year, and 7,396,497 intermodal units, up 2.6 percent.

Canadian railroads reported 76,320 carloads for the week, down 7.8 percent, and 62,638 intermodal units, up 5.5 percent. Through 28 weeks, Canadian railroads logged cumulative volume of 3,869,830 carloads, containers and trailers, up 1.9 percent

Mexican railroads logged 16,958 carloads for the week, up 2.1 percent, and 10,796 intermodal units, down 7.4 percent. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first 28 weeks came in at 752,103 units, up 2.3 percent.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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