UpdateCanadian weekly chemical railcar traffic rises 16.3%

24 November 2010 17:09  [Source: ICIS news]

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

TORONTO (ICIS)--Chemical shipments on Canadian railroads rose 16.3% last week from the same period in 2009, marking their 46th consecutive weekly increase this year, an industry association said on Wednesday.

Canadian chemical railcar loadings for the week ended on 20 November were 15,504, up from 13,334 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 19.2% year-over-year increase in Canadian chemical carloads in the previous week ended 13 November.

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 20 November, Canadian chemical railcar shipments were up 23.1% to 668,892, from 543,390 in the same period in 2009.

The association said that chemical railcar traffic in Mexico fell 14.1% last week to 855, from 995 in the same week a year earlier.

For the year-to-date period, Mexican shipments were down 1.8%, to 50,739, from 51,684 in the same period last year. Mexican railcar shipments were hindered by flooding in past weeks.

The AAR reported earlier on Wednesday that US chemical railcar traffic rose 4.0% for the week and was up 9.6% year-to-date to 20 November.

Overall chemical railcar shipments for all of North America - US, Canada and Mexico - rose 7.5% for the week ended 20 November, to 44,886, from 41,752.

For the year-to-date period to 20 November, overall North American chemical railcar traffic was up 13.3% to 2,047,877, from 1,807,297in 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 3.9% to 297,990 from 286,902, and was up 7.2% to 13,207,976 year-to-date to 20 November.

For all of North America, total railcar traffic rose 4.2% to 386,636 from 371,181, and was up 9.4% to 17,213,081 year-to-date to 20 November.

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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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