Rail traffic continues to show signs of growth here as intermodal traffic surged 11.9% in the latest week. This data can be volatile at times, but the 12 week moving average remains fairly healthy at 3.2%. No major change in trend and still, in my opinion, consistent with a muddle through economy. Here’s more from the AAR:
“The Association of American Railroads (AAR) today reported increased U.S. rail traffic for the week ending March 15, 2014 with 289,375 total U.S. carloads, up 3.1 percent compared with the same week last year. Total U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 255,991 units, up 11.9 percent compared with the same week last year. Total combined U.S. weekly rail traffic was 545,366 carloads and intermodal units, up 7 percent compared with the same week last year.
Seven of the 10 carload commodity groups posted increases compared with the same week in 2013, led by grain with 21,045 carloads, up 21 percent. Commodities showing a decrease compared with the same week last year were led by motor vehicles and parts with 17,936 carloads, down 8 percent.
For the first 11 weeks of 2014, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 3,009,897 carloads, even compared with the same point last year, and 2,677,098 intermodal units, up 2.3 percent from last year. Total combined U.S. traffic for the first 11 weeks of 2014 was 5,686,995 carloads and intermodal units, up 1.1 percent from last year.”