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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

U.S. railroads post traffic increases in grain, autos


U.S. railroads reported traffic fell 6.4 percent to 531,484 carloads and intermodal units during the week ending Aug. 20, according to the Association of American Railroads (AAR).

Total carloads for U.S. railroads declined 6.4 percent to 270,464 units compared with the same week a year ago, while intermodal volume fell 6.4 percent to 261,020 containers and trailers, AAR officials said in a press release.

Four of the 10 commodity groups reflected increases during the week compared with a year ago. They included grain, which rose 36.5 percent to 24,944 carloads; motor vehicles and parts, up 4.9 percent to 18,974 carloads; and miscellaneous carloads, up 4.8 percent to 10,558 carloads.

Commodity groups that posted decreases included petroleum and petroleum products, down 24.2 percent to 10,933 carloads; coal, down 16.6 percent to 89,599 carloads; and forest products, down 14.3 percent to 9,869 carloads.

Also during the week, Canadian railroads reported carload traffic fell 5.8 percent to 70,786 units, while intermodal volume slipped 1.5 percent to 62,881 containers and trailers for the week compared with traffic results a year ago.

Mexican railroads posted a 5.8 percent decrease in carload traffic to 15,535 units for the week, along with a 4.7 percent drop in intermodal volume to 11,683 intermodal units for the week.

For the first 33 weeks of the year, U.S. railroads reported total combined traffic was 16,633,599 carloads and intermodal units, down 7.3 percent compared with the year-ago period. Canadian railroads logged cumulative rail traffic volume of 4,230,741 carloads, containers and trailers, down 7.2 percent, for the 33-week period. Mexican railroads' 33-week traffic volume was down 1.9 percent to 887,195 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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