RAIL TRAFFIC: Still No Recession

Rail traffic continues to be a bright spot in the US economy though growth has definitely slowed some in recent months.  This week’s traffic trends showed a rise in intermodal traffic at a 2.4% year over year rate.  That brings the 3 month average to 2.35%.  I think this data is one of many indicators that continues to point to a sluggish, but expanding US economy.

Here’s more via the AAR:

“The Association of American Railroads (AAR) today reported mixed weekly rail traffic for the week ending November 17, 2012, with U.S. railroads originating 288,717 carloads, down 4.3 per cent compared with the same week last year. Intermodal volume for the week totaled 249,115 trailers and containers, up 2.4 per cent compared with the same week last year.

Eight of the 20 carload commodity groups posted increases compared with the same week in 2011, with petroleum products, up 54.2 per cent; motor vehicles and equipment, up 16.3 per cent, and primary forest products, up 14.8 per cent. The groups showing a decrease in weekly traffic included metallic ores, down 15.8 per cent; grain, down 13.4 per cent, and nonmetallic minerals, down 12.4 per cent.

Weekly carload volume on Eastern railroads was down 4.5 per cent compared with the same week last year. In the West, weekly carload volume was down 4.1 per cent compared with the same week in 2011.

For the first 46 weeks of 2012, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 13,037,190 carloads, down 3 per cent from the same point last year, and 10,943,385 trailers and containers, up 3.4 per cent from last year.”


(Chart via Orcam Investment Research)

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.