Rail traffic rebounded this week after a negative print last week. Intermodal traffic expanded at 7.2% which brings the 12 week moving average to 7.1%. This is an extremely healthy reading and not consistent with yesterday's negative economic news.
Here's some more detail via AAR:
The Association of American Railroads (AAR) today reported increased U.S. rail traffic for the week ending Jan. 18, 2014 with 289,825 total U.S. carloads, up 4.5 percent compared with the same week last year. Total U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 267,428 units up 7.2 percent compared with the same week last year. Total combined U.S. weekly rail traffic was 557,253 carloads and intermodal units, up 5.8 percent compared with the same week last year.
Eight of the 10 carload commodity groups posted increases compared with the same week in 2013, including nonmetallic minerals and products with 32,557 carloads, up 20.9 percent; and, petroleum and petroleum products with 15,708 carloads, up 13.3 percent. Commodities showing a decrease compared with the same week last year included metallic ores and metals with 25,509 carloads, down 1.5 percent.
For the first three weeks of 2014, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 793,520 carloads, down 0.7 percent from the same point last year, and 690,293 intermodal units, up 1.4 percent from last year. Total combined U.S. traffic for the first three weeks of 2014 was 1,483,813 carloads and intermodal units, up 0.3 percent from last year.