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Rail traffic continues to show a modest expansion according to the latest readings from the American Association of Railroads. The latest reading showed a year-over-year change of 3.4% in intermodal traffic, which brought the 12-week moving average up to 3.1%. This is the highest reading since May of this year.

AAR has more details:

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported mixed weekly rail traffic for the week ending Sept. 21, 2013, with total U.S. weekly carloads of 288,160 carloads, down 1.5 percent compared with the same week last year. Intermodal volume for the week totaled 262,897 units, up 3.4 percent compared with the same week last year. Total U.S. rail traffic for the week was 551,057 combined carloads and intermodal units, up 0.8 percent compared with the same week last year.

Six of the 10 carload commodity groups posted increases compared with the same week in 2012, led by petroleum and petroleum products, with 12,767 carloads or 8.0 percent. Commodities showing a decrease compared with the same week last year included grain, with 15,684 carloads, down 21.3 percent.

For the first 38 weeks of 2013, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 10,643,729 carloads, down 1.0 percent from the same point last year, and 9,277,911 intermodal units, up 3.7 percent from last year. Total U.S. traffic for the first 38 weeks of 2013 was 19,921,640 carloads and intermodal units, up 1.1 percent from last year.

(click to enlarge)

Source: Rail Traffic Continues Modest Expansion