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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

U.S. rail traffic slump carries into June


U.S. railroad traffic continued to slide during June's first full week, with combined carload and intermodal volumes falling 8.5 percent to 513,099 units compared with the same week last year, according to Association of American Railroads (AAR) data.

Total carloads for the week ending June 8 plummeted 9.1 percent to 246,758 units, while intermodal traffic dropped 8 percent to 266,341 containers and trailers.

Three of the 10 carload commodity groups that the AAR tracks on a weekly basis posted increases: petroleum and petroleum products were up 2,346 carloads to 13,351; chemicals, up 679 carloads to 32,353; and miscellaneous loads, up 114 carloads to 10,187.

Commodity groups that logged decreases during the week included coal, down 13,505 carloads to 71,526; nonmetallic minerals, down 5,669 carloads to 35,087; and motor vehicles and parts, down 2,243 carloads to 15,752.

Meanwhile, Canadian railroads reported 84,023 carloads for the week, up 1.5 percent, and 69,961 intermodal units, up 1 percent year over year. Mexican railroads for the week reported 21,740 carloads, down 2.4 percent, and 17,841 intermodal units, down 3.7 percent.

Through 2019’s first 23 weeks versus the same period in 2018:
• U.S. railroads posted total combined traffic of 11,890,210 carloads and intermodal units, down 2.7 percent;
• Canadian railroads reported cumulative traffic of 3,451,487 carloads, containers and trailers, up 2.2 percent; and
• Mexican railroads logged cumulative traffic of 843,440 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, down 4.3 percent.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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