U.S.-NAFTA freight value percent change from previous year. Graphic: U.S DOT

U.S.-NAFTA freight value percent change from previous year. Graphic: U.S DOT

The value of freight moved between the U.S. and its North American Free Trade Agreement Partners totaled $97.4 billion during August as all five major transportation modes carried more freight, according to the U.S. Transportation Department.

The 4.6% rise is the 10th consecutive month in which the year-over-year value in current dollars of U.S.-NAFTA freight increased from the same month of the previous year.

The value of commodities moving by pipeline increased 13.2%, air by 8.4%, vessel by 4.5%, truck by 3.6%, and rail by 3.2%. The large percentage increase in the value of goods moving by pipeline is due in part to an increase in the volume of mineral fuel imports, according to the department.

Trucks carried 64.7% of U.S.-NAFTA freight and continued to be the most utilized mode for moving goods to and from both U.S.-NAFTA partners. Trucks accounted for $31.9 billion of the $52 billion of imports, or 61.4%, and $31.1 billion of the $45.4 billion of exports, or 68.5%.

Rail remained the second largest mode by value, moving 15.1% of all U.S.-NAFTA freight, followed by vessel, 5.8%; pipeline, 5.5%; and air, 3.9%.

The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 85.3% of the total value of U.S.-NAFTA freight flows

Comparing August 2016 to August 2017, the value of U.S.-Canada freight flows increased by 4.7% to $49.5 billion as the value of freight on four major modes increased from a year earlier.

The value of freight carried on pipeline increased by 20%, air by 7.1%, truck by 3.4%, and rail by 1.1%. Vessel decreased by 5.3% due in part to a decrease in the volume of mineral fuel shipments.

Trucks carried 58.9% of the value of the freight to and from Canada. Rail carried 15.9% followed by pipeline, 10.3%; air, 4.8%; and vessel, 3.4%. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 85.1% of the value of total U.S.-Canada freight flows.

The top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Canada during August was vehicles and parts, of which $5.5 billion, or 58.1%, moved by truck and $3.7 billion, or 38.9%, by rail.

To the south, when August 2016 is compared to August 2017, the value of U.S.-Mexico freight flows increased by 4.5% to $47.9 billion as the value of freight on four major modes increased from a year earlier.

The value of commodities moved by air increased by 10.7%, vessel by 9.4%, rail by 5.8%, and truck by 3.7%. Pipeline decreased by 43.1% due primarily to decreases in the volumes of goods imported

Trucks carried 70.6% of the value of freight to and from Mexico. Rail carried 14.3% followed by vessel, 8.2%; air, 2.9%; and pipeline, 0.6%. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 85.5% of the value of total U.S.-Mexico freight flows.

The top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Mexico in August was vehicles and parts, of which $4.5 billion, or 48.7%, moved by truck and $3.8 billion, or 41.6%, moved by rail.

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