UpdateCanadian weekly chemical railcar traffic rises 25.2%

14 October 2010 18:01  [Source: ICIS news]

(updates with Canadian, Mexican and overall North American shipment data)

TORONTO (ICIS)--Chemical shipments on Canadian railroads rose 25.2% last week from the same period in 2009, marking their 40th consecutive weekly increase this year, an industry association said on Thursday.

Canadian chemical railcar loadings for the week ended on 9 October were 15,157, up from 12,102 in the same week last year, according to data released by the Association of American Railroads (AAR).

The increase for the week came after a 15.4% year-over-year increase in Canadian chemical carloads in the previous week ended 2 October.

The weekly chemical railcar loadings data are seen as an important real-time measure of chemical industry activity and demand. In Canada, chemical railcar traffic accounts for about 20% of overall railcar shipments, compared with around 10% in the US.

For the year-to-date period to 9 October, Canadian chemical railcar shipments were up 23.3% to 575,657, from 466,848 in the same period in 2009.

The association said that chemical railcar traffic in Mexico fell 16.5% last week to 990, from 1,186 in the same week a year earlier. Mexican railcar shipments were hindered by flooding in recent weeks.

For the year-to-date period, Mexican shipments were down 0.6%, to 44,936, from 45,195 in the same period last year.

The AAR reported earlier on Thursday that US chemical railcar traffic rose 6.0% for the week and was up 10.1% year to date to 9 October.

Overall chemical railcar shipments for all of North America - US, Canada and Mexico - rose 11.2% for the week ended 9 October, to 44,160 from 39,712.

For the year-to-date period to 9 October, overall North American chemical railcar traffic was up 13.7% to 1,775,655, from 1,561,403 in the year-earlier period.

Overall, the AAR tracks 19 carload commodity categories.

From the same week last year, total US weekly railcar traffic for the 19 carload commodity groups tracked by the AAR rose 8.8% to 297,029 from 273,003, and was up 7.2% to 11,425,258 year-to-date to 9 October.

For all of North America, total railcar traffic rose 9.5%, to 385,686 to 352,373, and was up 9.8% to 14,886,954 year-to-date to 9 October.

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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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