UpdateCanada chemical railcar traffic rises for 7th straight week

21 February 2013 18:18  [Source: ICIS news]

(updates with Canadian and Mexican data)

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Chemical shipments on Canadian railroads rose by 6.9% year on year to 11,897 railcar loadings in the week ended 16 February, marking their seventh straight increase so far this year, according to data released by a rail industry association on Thursday.

In the previous week, ended 9 February, Canadian chemical railcar shipments rose by 12.5%. From 1 January to 16 February, Canadian chemical railcar loadings were up 10.0% to 76,617, the Association of American Railroads (AAR) said. 

The weekly chemical railcar loadings data are seen as important real-time measures of chemical industry activity and demand. Canadian chemical producers rely on rail to ship more than 70% of their products, with many firms relying exclusively on rail shipments.

The AAR said that weekly chemical railcars in Mexico rose by 15.1% year on year to 1,295. From 1 January to 16 February, Mexican chemical railcar loadings were up by 16.8% to 9,035.

US chemical railcar traffic fell by 1.5% year on year to 29,958 loadings in the week ended 16 February, marking its sixth decline so far this year.

In the previous week, ended 9 February, US chemical car loadings rose 1.6% year on year - the first increase after five straight declines. From 1 January to 16 February, US chemical railcar traffic is down 1.6% to 206,198 loadings.

Meanwhile, overall US weekly railcar loadings for the week ended 16 February in the freight commodity groups tracked by the AAR fell by 1.2% year on year to 278,596 carloads. Overall Canadian loadings rose 1.5% to 79,336, and Mexican loadings rose 11.5% to 15,919.

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

By: Stefan Baumgarten
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