No slowing in rail traffic despite what seems like a persistent barrage of bad news for the US economy. This week’s rail data was once again consistent with a modestly growing economy. Total carloads were up 1.1% while intermodal traffic was higher by 3%. Negative global trends are still not seeping into the US economy. More from the AAR:
“The Association of American Railroads (AAR) today reported gains in weekly rail traffic, with U.S. railroads originating 301,919 carloads for the week ending Nov. 19, 2011, up 1.1 percent compared with the same week last year. Intermodal volume for the week totaled 243,234 trailers and containers, up 3 percent compared with the same week last year.
Eleven of the 20 carload commodity groups posted increases compared with the same week in 2010, including: nonmetallic minerals up 30.6 percent; petroleum products, up 21.3 percent, and motor vehicles and equipment, up 16.3 percent. The groups showing a decrease in weekly traffic included: primary forest products, down 13.8; farm products, excluding grain down 12.4, and grain, down 11.9 percent.
Weekly carload volume on Eastern railroads was down 1.2 percent compared with the same week last year. In the West, weekly carload volume was up 2.7 percent compared with the same week in 2010.
For the first 46 weeks of 2011, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 13,444,752 carloads, up 1.8 percent from the same point last year, and 10,584,178 trailers and containers, up 5.2 percent from last year.”