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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

U.S. rail carload activity steady in Week 32


U.S. railroads logged 268,364 carloads for the week ending Aug. 12, a 0.3 percent increase compared with carload activity in the same week a year ago, according to the Association of American Railroads (AAR).

Combined with intermodal volume, U.S. railroads posted 548,790 carloads, containers and trailers during the week, a 2.7 percent increase compared with a year ago. Intermodal volume rose 5.1 percent to 280,426 units for the week.

Four of the 10 carload commodity groups that AAR tracks weekly posted increases compared with the same week in 2016. They included coal, up 5,689 carloads to 94,593; nonmetallic minerals, up 3,779 carloads to 40,794; and chemicals, up 1,169 carloads to 31,621.

Commodity groups that logged decreases during the week compared with a year ago included grain, down 6,161 carloads to 19,080; petroleum and petroleum products, down 1,807 carloads to 8,692; and motor vehicles and parts, down 1,277 carloads to 16,166.

Meanwhile, Canadian railroads reported 74,885 carloads for the week, up 8 percent, and 70,969 intermodal units, up 14.6 percent compared with the same week in 2016. Mexican railroads reported 15,995 carloads for the week, up 4.5 percent compared with the same week last year, and 12,584 intermodal units, up 15 percent.

For the first 32 weeks of this year, U.S. railroads logged a cumulative volume of 16,773,331 carloads and intermodal units, an increase of 4.2 percent compared with last year. Canadian railroads' cumulative volume for the period climbed 11.5 percent to 4,568,779 carloads, containers and trailers, while Mexican railroads' cumulative volume was essentially flat at 864,521 carloads and intermodal units compared with a year ago.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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