US weekly chemical railcar traffic rises 0.7%, Canada rises 7.7%

03 July 2014 17:18 Source:ICIS News

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US and Canadian chemical railcar shipments rose in the week ended 28 June while shipments in Mexico fell, according to data released on Thursday by a rail industry group.

US chemical railcar loadings were up for a sixth straight week, rising 0.7% year over year to 30,071. For the first 26 weeks of 2014 ended 28 June, loadings were up 1.4% year over year to 788,477.

The logistics data are an important real-time measurement 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.

Overall US weekly railcar loadings for the week ended 28 June in the freight commodity groups tracked by the Association of American Railroads (AAR) rose 6.3% to 298,457.

Canadian chemical railcar traffic rose 7.7% year over year to 11,813 loadings for the week but was down 0.7% year over year to 300,703 loadings for the first 26 weeks of 2014. Canadian chemical producers rely on rail to ship more than 70% of their products, with many relying exclusively on rail.

Mexican chemical railcar traffic fell 13.1% year over year to 1,362 loadings for the week and was down 1.0% to 36,262 loadings for the first 26 weeks of the year.

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By Stefan Baumgarten