US weekly chemical railcar traffic rises 3.1% year on year

27 January 2011 20:27  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS)--Chemical shipments on US railroads rose 3.1% last week compared with the same period a year earlier, a rail industry group said on Thursday.

There were 29,664 chemical railcar loadings in the week ended 22 January, up by 879 carloads from 28,785 in the same week a year earlier, according to the Association of American Railroads (AAR).

The previous week ended 15 January saw a year-on-year rise of 9.9%.

The weekly chemical railcar loadings data are an important real-time measure of chemical industry activity and demand. Railcar loadings represent about 20% of US chemical volumes by tonnage, with trucks, barges and pipelines carrying the rest.

The increase in chemical carloads compares with what the AAR called a modest 1.5% year-on-year increase in overall US weekly railcar shipments for the 19 high-volume freight commodity groups tracked by the AAR.

Year to date to 22 January, US chemical railcar loadings rose 6.9%, to 89,906 carloads from 84,083 in the year-earlier period.

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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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