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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

U.S. railroads moved a bit more traffic in Week 5


U.S. freight railroads logged 495,815 carloads and intermodal units during the week ending Feb. 6, a 2.2% increase compared with the same week last year, according to Association for American Railroads (AAR) data.

Total carloads decreased 2.5% to 226,393, while intermodal volume increased 6.4% to 269,422 carloads and containers.

Five of the 10 carload commodity groups that AAR tracks on a weekly basis posted an increase. They included grain, up 5,070 carloads to 25,951; chemicals, up 909 to 33,581; and farm products excluding grain, and food, up 551 carloads to 16,801.

Commodities that logged decreases included coal, down 4,936 carloads to 60,071; nonmetallic minerals, down 3,530 to 24,821; and miscellaneous, down 1,546 to 9,321.

Meanwhile, Canadian railroads reported 77,309 carloads for the week, a 1.1% increase, and 71,036 intermodal units, up 15.2%. Mexican railroads reported 16,956 carloads, down 15.8%, and 13,811 containers and trailers, down 21.9%.

Individual Class Is reported the following carload volumes for the week compared with the same week last year: BNSF Railway Co., 88,333 carloads, down from 91,176; Canadian Pacific, 31,977 carloads, up from 30,378; CN, 59,351 carloads, down from 61,330; CSX, 62,217 carloads, down from 65,693; Kansas City Southern, 14,524 carloads, up from 13,939; Norfolk Southern Railway, 56,381 carloads, down from 57,402; and Union Pacific Railroad, 83,673 carloads, down from 88,143.

For the first five weeks of 2021 compared with the same period in 2020:
• U.S. railroads reported 2,599,338 carloads and intermodal units, up 4.7%;
• Canadian railroads reported 768,953 carloads and intermodal units, up 5.9%; and
• Mexican railroads reported 160,823 carloads and intermodal units, down 15.3%.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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