Railroad shipping: AAR reports volumes are up for September 2011

Intermodal sets 2011 weekly record for second straight week.

By ·

The Association for American Railroads (AAR) reported that carload and intermodal volumes in September were up on an annual basis.

September carloads—at 1,195,671—were up 1.1 percent annually. Intermodal—at 949,606 trailers and containers—was up 2.3 percent compared to September 2010. While both categories were up annually, they were down sequentially, with August carload and intermodal volumes reaching 1,482,570 and 1,179,838, respectively.

“Carloads have been closely tracking last year’s levels for six months, and intermodal continues to grow, though more moderately than earlier this year,” said AAR Senior Vice President John T. Gray in a statement. “Rail traffic is consistent with an economy that is probably still growing, but far more slowly than any of us would want.” 

Of the 20 major commodities tracked by the AAR, 13 were up on an annual basis in September. Petroleum and petroleum products were up 16.1 percent, and grain carloads were down 18.2 percent, marking the third consecutive month grain was down.

The AAR reported that rail employment figures saw a bounce in August (the month for which data is most recently available in this category), with 1,191 jobs added. This brings total Class I freight railroad employment to 161,107, said the AAR.

In the month of September, the AAR said that rail car owners brought 11,087 cars out of storage with roughly about 17.1 percent of the North American car fleet remaining in storage.

For the week ending October 1, the AAR said that U.S. railroads hit 312,170 carloads for a 4.7 percent annual increase, which topped the week ending September 24 at 305,133 and the week ending April 2, which hit 305,905 carloads, and had been the highest weekly carload tally since the end of 2008.

Weekly intermodal numbers hit 250,864 trailers and containers for a 4.4 percent gain over last year. This also topped the week ending September 24, which hit 248,402. These two weeks represent the highest weekly totals for intermodal in 2011, coming ahead of the previous weekly high from week 39 of 2007.


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!

Article Topics

AAR · Intermodal · Rail Freight · All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
Digital Issue: The Current State of Third-Party Logistics Services
It has become quite clear that logistics professionals are now facing an unprecedented set of challenges. From tightening capacity, to ongoing regulation hurdles, to the complexity brought on by e-commerce, today’s shippers are transforming the way they manage their logistics operations.
Download Today!
From the June 2017 Issue
Here are five trends that every shipper­—and potential shipper—must watch as the demand for experienced logistics and supply chain professionals soars.
2017 Rail/Intermodal Roundtable: Volume stable, business steady
Cross-Border Logistics: NAFTA tune-up time
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
Women in Logistics: Breaking Gender Roles to Win the War for Talent
In this session you'll hear from a panel of women who are now leading top-level logistics and supply chain operations. The panel will share their success stories as well as advice for women who are now making their way up the ladder.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
2017 Top 50 3PLs: Investment and Consolidation Maintain Traction
The trend set over the past few years for mergers and acquisitions has hardly subsided, and a fresh...
The Evolution of the Digital Supply Chain
Everyone is talking about terms like digitization, Industry 4.0 and digital supply chain management,...

2017 Salary Survey: Fresh Voices Express Optimism
Our “33rd Annual Salary Survey” reflects more diversity entering the logistics management...
LM Exclusive: Major Modes Join E-commerce Mix
While last mile carriers receive much of the attention, the traditional modal heavyweights are in...