The Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported weekly U.S. rail traffic, as well as volumes for November 2016.
Carload traffic in November totaled 1,319,008 carloads, up 0.4 percent or 5,406 carloads from November 2015. U.S. railroads also originated 1,319,189 containers and trailers in November 2016, up 1.9 percent or 29,735 units from the same month last year. For November 2016, combined U.S. carload and intermodal originations were 2,638,197, up 1.1 percent or 29,735 carloads and intermodal units from November 2015.
In November 2016, 11 of the 20 carload commodity categories tracked by the AAR each month saw carload gains compared with November 2015. These included: grain, up 18.6 percent or 20,209 carloads; chemicals, up 1.9 percent or 2,714 carloads; and waste and nonferrous scrap, up 13.1 percent or 2,202 carloads. Commodities that saw declines in November 2016 from November 2015 included: petroleum and petroleum products, down 15.4 percent or 9,813 carloads; coal, down 2 percent or 9,282 carloads; and motor vehicles and parts, down 3.5 percent or 3,134 carloads.
Excluding coal, carloads were up 1.7 percent or 14,688 carloads in November 2016 from November2015. Total U.S. carload traffic for the first 48 weeks of 2016 was 12,123,218 carloads, down 9 percent or 1,195,299 carloads, while intermodal containers and trailers were 12,478,621 units, down 2.5 percent or 322,386 containers and trailers when compared to the same period in 2015. For the first eleven months of 2016, total rail traffic volume in the United States was 24,601,839 carloads and intermodal units, down 5.8 percent or 1,517,685 carloads and intermodal units from the same point last year. "There are glimmers of hope in rail traffic data in November, with carloads and intermodal totals both up over last year - something that hasn't happened for carloadsand for intermodal ," said AAR Senior Vice President of Policy and Economics John T. Gray. "Hopefully, these results are indicators of continuing future growth for the manufacturing economy, for trade, and for rail traffic. It appears that economic fundamentals are trending toward more positive results than have been seen in the recent past."
Week ending December 3, 2016 Total U.S. weekly rail traffic for the week ending December 3, 2016 53,130 carloads and intermodal units, up 2 percent compared with the same week last year. Total carloads for the week ending December 3 were 274,329 carloads, up 0.9 percent compared with the same week in 2015, while U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 278,801 containers and trailers, up 3.2 percent compared to 2015. North American rail volume for the week ending December 3, 2016, on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads totaled 370,061 carloads, up 1.7 percent compared with the same week last year, and 351,814 intermodal units, up 3.5 percent compared with last year. Total combined weekly rail traffic in North America was 721,875 carloads and intermodal units, up 2.6 percent. North American rail volume for the first 48 weeks of 2016 was 32,227,999 carloads and intermodal units, down 5.3 percent compared with 2015. Canadian railroads reported 79,650 carloads for the week, up 4.9 percent, and 61,743 intermodal units, up 5.6 percent compared with the same week in 2015. For the first 48 weeks of 2016, Canadian railroads reported cumulative rail traffic volume of 6,333,268 carloads, containers and trailers, down 4percent. Mexican railroads reported 16,082 carloads for the week, down 1.6 percent compared with the same week last year, and 11,270 intermodal units, up 2 percent. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first 48 weeks of 2016 was 1,292,892 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, down 2.2 percent from the same point last year. >Crude Oil Carload Update
The AAR also reported U.S. Class I railroads originated 48,978 carloads of crude oil in the second quarter of 2016, down 7,476 carloads or 13.2 percent from the second quarter of 2016 and down 52,189 carloads or 51.6 percent from the third quarter of 2015.