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Friday, October 07, 2011

AAR: Rail Traffic increases in September

by Calculated Risk on 10/07/2011 06:40:00 PM

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) reports carload traffic in September 2011 1.1 percent compared with the same month last year, and intermodal traffic (using intermodal or shipping containers) increased 2.3 percent compared with September 2010. On a seasonally adjusted basis, carloads in were up 1.1% in September 2011 compared with August 2011; intermodal in September 2011 was up 1.0% from August 2011.

U.S. freight railroads originated 1,195,671 carloads in September 2011, an average of 298,918 carloads per week and up 1.1% over September 2010 (see charts below). During the last week of September — Week 39 of 2011 — U.S. railroads originated 312,170 carloads of freight, which is more carload traffic than in any week since Week 45 in November 2008.
Rail Traffic Click on graph for larger image in graph gallery.

This graph shows U.S. average weekly rail carloads (NSA).

Rail carload traffic collapsed in November 2008, and now, over 2 years into the recovery, carload traffic is only about half way back.

The second graph is for intermodal traffic (using intermodal or shipping containers):Rail Traffic
U.S. rail intermodal traffic rose for the 22nd straight month in September 2011.1 U.S. railroads originated 949,606 containers and trailers for the month for an average of 237,402 units per week, up 2.3% from September 2010, up from an average of 235,968 in August 2011, and the highest weekly average for any month since October 2007 (see the chart on the top right of the next page). Week 39 of 2011, the last week of September, had intermodal volume of 250,864 intermodal units, the 12th highest-volume intermodal week ever for U.S. railroads and the highest of any week since Week 39 in September 2007.
excerpts with permission
Rail traffic improved in September, and really picked up towards the end of the month.