AAR reports railroad traffic is up for week ending January 29

Railroad traffic for the week ending January 22 was up again on an annual basis, according to data released by the Association of American Railroads (AAR).

By ·

Railroad traffic for the week ending January 29 was up again on an annual basis, according to data released by the Association of American Railroads (AAR).

Carload volume at 291,147 was up 4.7 percent year-over-year, which is ahead of the week ending January 22 at 282,837. The AAR said that carload volume was up 2.4 percent in the East and up 6.2 percent out West.

Intermodal volumes for the week ending January 29 totaled 222,742 total trailers and containers, which was up 9.2 percent annually. Containers—at 190,140—were up 10.1 percent, and trailers—at 32,602—were up 4.4 percent. This output was far ahead of the week ending January 22, which saw 180,888.

As LM has reported, while volumes are up annually and at recent levels on a sequential basis, it appears the annual comparisons for railroad data will be less impressive than they were in 2010, considering 2010 comparisons were up against a difficult 2009.

But railroad volume appear to be picking up where 2010 left off, and prospects for 2011 look very encouraging, especially in light of recent fourth-quarter and full-year earnings results from multiple Class I carriers, which pointed to continued pricing and volume increases.

Of the 20 commodity groups the AAR tracks, 14 saw annual growth for the week ending January 29, with metallic ores up 17.7 percent and farm products excluding grain up 37.2 percent. Coal was up 4.7 percent. 

Estimated ton-miles for the week ending January 29 were 32.8 billion for a 5.8 percent annual increase, and for the first four weeks of 2011 the 128.2 billion ton-miles recorded are up 9.0 percent.

“On a year-to-date basis, carloads are 8.0% higher vs. last year and intermodal units are 7.4% higher,” wrote Avondale Partners analyst Donald Broughton in a research note. “Coal continues to progress, as normalized utility coal stockpiles, along with improving trends for domestic met coal and export coal should yield weekly coal volumes in the 150-160k range. When combined with the steady rise in intermodal units and the strong volumes seen in chemical and metals, as well as the growing boost from agricultural volumes, we anticipate strong overall volumes moving forward.”

For more stories on railroad shipping, click here.


About the Author

Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. Contact Jeff Berman

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Latest Whitepaper
The E-commerce Logistics Revolution
The technology and processes that are revolutionizing logistics and supply chain operations are helping today’s organizations keep pace with digital commerce.
Download Today!
From the January 2018 Logistics Management Magazine Issue
Industry experts agree that costs across all sectors worldwide will continue to rise in 2018, and the most successful shippers will be those that are able to mitigate their impact on profitability. And, the right technology will play an increasingly vital role in driving efficiencies across the global logistics network.
The Future of Retail Distribution
Navigating the Reverse Supply Chain for Connected Devices
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
IAM, IoT and the Connected Supply Chain
There are three primary models of Identity and Access Management (IAM) technology that CTOs, CSOs, and Supply Chain executives are using to enhance their trading partner communities. While each leverages IAM and the IoT as core components only an “Outside-in” approach truly connects people, systems and things reliably and securely across the supply chain.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
State of Global Logistics: Delivering above and beyond
Industry experts agree that costs across all sectors worldwide will continue to rise in 2018, and...
2018 Rate Outlook: Economic Expansion, Pushing Rates Skyward
Trade and transport analysts see rates rising across all modes in accordance with continued...

Building the NextGen Supply Chain: Keeping pace with the digital economy
Peerless Media’s 2017 Virtual Summit shows how creating a data-rich ecosystem can eliminate...
2017 NASSTRAC Shipper of the Year: Mallinckrodt; Mastering and managing complexity
An inside look at how a large pharmaceutical firm transformed its vendor and supplier relationships...