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AAR reports mixed weekly rail traffic

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported mixed weekly rail traffic for the week ending May 12, 2012, with U.S. railroads originating 279,063 carloads, down 5.2 percent compared with the same week last year. Intermodal volume for the week totaled 238,980 trailers and containers, up 3.1 percent compared with the same week last year.

Ten of the 20 carload commodity groups posted increases compared with the same week in 2011, with petroleum products, up 49 percent; motor vehicles and equipment, up 35.7 percent, and lumber and wood products, up 20.3 percent. The groups showing a decrease in weekly traffic included coal, down 16.2 percent; nonmetallic minerals, down 15.4 percent, and grain, down 11.4 percent.

Weekly carload volume on Eastern railroads was down 5.2 percent compared with the same week last year. In the West, weekly carload volume was down 5.2 percent compared with the same week in 2011.

For the first 19 weeks of 2012, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 5,347,394 carloads, down 3.3 percent from the same point last year, and 4,353,407 trailers and containers, up 2.8 percent from last year.

Canadian railroads reported 79,063 carloads for the week, up 3.4 percent compared with the same week last year, and 52,456 trailers and containers, up 7.2 percent compared with 2011. For the first 19 weeks of 2012, Canadian railroads reported cumulative volume of 1,465,905 carloads, up 4.7 percent from the same point last year, and 951,318 trailers and containers, up 7.9 percent from last year.

Mexican railroads reported 14,510 carloads for the week, up 6.2 percent compared with the same week last year, and 9,666 trailers and containers, up 16.2 percent. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first 19 weeks of 2012 is 259,044 carloads, down 4.1 percent compared with the same point last year, and 169,103 trailers and containers, up 22.1 percent from last year.

Combined North American rail volume for the first 19 weeks of 2012 on 13 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads totaled 7,072,343 carloads, down 1.8 percent compared with the same point last year, and 5,473,828 trailers and containers, up 4.2 percent compared with last year.
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