US chemical railcar traffic falls for fifth week in a row

12 April 2012 19:02  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US chemical railcar traffic fell by 3.7% year on year for the week ended 7 April, marking its fifth decline in a row and the ninth decline so far this year, according to data released on Thursday by a rail industry group.

There were 28,614 chemical railcar loadings last week, compared with 29,708 in the corresponding week of 2011, the Association of American Railroads (AAR) said.

In the previous week, ended 31 March, US weekly chemical railcar loadings fell by 5.3%.

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

From 1 January to 7 April, US chemical railcar loadings were down by 1.5%, to 422,485, compared with the corresponding period of last year.

Meanwhile, overall US weekly railcar loadings for the 19 high-volume freight commodity groups tracked by the AAR fell by 7.7% year on year to 270,974 carloads.

Paul Hodges studies key influences shaping the chemical industry in his Chemicals and the Economy Blog

By: Stefan Baumgarten
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