The Association of American Railroads (AAR) today reported U.S. rail traffic for the week ending January 29, 2022, as well as volumes for January 2022. U.S. railroads originated 902,265 carloads in January 2022, down 3 percent, or 27,861 carloads, from January 2021. U.S. railroads also originated 1,001,443 containers and trailers in January 2022, down 14.6 percent, or 171,796 units, from the same month last year. Combined U.S. carload and intermodal originations in January 2022 were 1,903,708, down 9.5 percent, or 199,657 carloads and intermodal units from January 2021.
In January 2022, six of the 20 carload commodity categories tracked by the AAR each month saw carload gains compared with January 2021. These included: coal, up 13,596 carloads or 5.6 percent; crushed stone, sand & gravel, up 4,384 carloads or 7.2 percent; and chemicals, up 1,099 carloads or 0.8 percent. Commodities that saw declines in January 2022 from January 2021 included: grain, down 15,396 carloads or 14 percent; motor vehicles & parts, down 11,559 carloads or 19.8 percent; and petroleum & petroleum products, down 9,509 carloads or 20.1 percent.
Excluding coal, carloads were down 41,457 carloads, or 6 percent, in January 2022 from January 2021. Excluding coal and grain, carloads were down 26,061 carloads, or 4.5 percent.
Week Ending January 29, 2022
Total U.S. weekly rail traffic was 491,868 carloads and intermodal units, down 5.6 percent compared with the same week last year.
Total carloads for the week ending January 29 were 235,203 carloads, up 1.5 percent compared with the same week in 2021, while U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 256,665 containers and trailers, down 11.3 percent compared to 2021.
Six of the 10 carload commodity groups posted an increase compared with the same week in 2021. They included coal, up 6,211 carloads, to 67,825; nonmetallic minerals, up 3,063 carloads, to 27,703; and chemicals, up 958 carloads, to 34,977. Commodity groups that posted decreases compared with the same week in 2021 included motor vehicles and parts, down 2,540 carloads, to 12,904; grain, down 2,514 carloads, to 24,959; and petroleum and petroleum products, down 1,673 carloads, to 9,625.
North American rail volume for the week ending January 29, 2022, on 12 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads totaled 330,400 carloads, down 1.5 percent compared with the same week last year, and 337,564 intermodal units, down 10.6 percent compared with last year. Total combined weekly rail traffic in North America was 667,964 carloads and intermodal units, down 6.3 percent. North American rail volume for the first four weeks of 2022 was 2,562,997 carloads and intermodal units, down 10.9 percent compared with 2021.
Canadian railroads reported 74,271 carloads for the week, down 9.5 percent, and 65,392 intermodal units, down 7.2 percent compared with the same week in 2021. For the first four weeks of 2022, Canadian railroads reported cumulative rail traffic volume of 520,104 carloads, containers and trailers, down 16.3 percent.
Mexican railroads reported 20,926 carloads for the week, down 2.9 percent compared with the same week last year, and 15,507 intermodal units, down 13.4 percent. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first four weeks of 2022 was 139,185 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, down 8.6 percent from the same point last year.
-via Press Release