After hitting record high levels for two straight weeks, intermodal rail traffic set another new record during June.
The Association of American Railroads reports intermodal traffic in June totaled 1,077,385 containers and trailers, up 6.7% over June 2013. The weekly average in June was 269,346 units, the highest for any month in history. In the second quarter of 2014, intermodal traffic grew 8%.
The peak for intermodal traffic is generally in the fall, so look for more records to be set in the months ahead, according to AAR. Through the first six months of 2014, containers accounted for 88.4% of intermodal volume, a higher percentage than ever before.
U.S. Class I railroads originated 1,177,655 carloads in June 2014, up 3.6% over June 2013. Year-over-year monthly carload growth averaged 4.9% from March 2014 through June 2014, the highest average for any four-month period since December 2010 through March 2011. Total carloads averaged 294,414 in June, the highest weekly average for June since 2008.
“All in all, June was another good month for rail traffic,” said AAR Senior Vice President John T. Gray. “The fact that most categories of rail traffic were up in June, and that intermodal set a new volume record, supports the view that the economy is rebounding at a decent pace. Railroads will continue to do their part in ensuring this continues.”
AAR also reported increased rail traffic for the week ending June 28. U.S. railroads originated 298,457 carloads last week, up 6.3% compared with the same week last year, while intermodal volume for the week totaled 264,766 units, up 6% compared with the same week last year. Total U.S. rail traffic for the week was 563,223 carloads and intermodal units, up 6.2% compared with the same week last year.
For the first 26 weeks of 2014, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 7,448,294 carloads, up 3.2% from the same point last year, and 6,642,440 intermodal units, up 5.9% from last year. Total U.S. traffic for the first 26 weeks of 2014 was 14,090,734 carloads and intermodal units, up 4.5% from last year.