BNSF Railway’s carloads in Week 20
In Week 20 (ended May 19), western US rail freight major BNSF Railway’s (BRK.B) carload traffic rose 4.3% YoY (year-over-year) to ~97,600 railcars (excluding intermodal) from ~93,500. Competitor Union Pacific (UNP) followed BNSF Railway in terms of carload growth, posting a 3.7% rise YoY. BNSF’s carload growth rose 1.2% YoY.
Carload volumes, excluding coal (ARCH) and coke, rose 7.5% YoY in Week 20, to 63,800 units from 59,400. However, coal and coke carloads fell 1.3% YoY to ~33,700 units from ~34,200.
Changes in carload commodity groups
The following commodity groups’ volumes rose in Week 20:
- motor vehicles
- sand and gravel
- stone, clay, and glass products
- grain mill
The following commodity groups’ volumes fell in Week 20:
- metallic ores
BNSF’s intermodal traffic
In Week 20, BNSF Railway’s intermodal units grew 3.7% YoY to ~106,000 containers and trailers from ~102,500. Container traffic rose 0.30% YoY to ~92,800 containers from ~92,500, while trailer volumes rose 32.1% YoY to 13,100 units from ~10,000.
In the first 20 weeks of 2018, BNSF’s overall rail traffic including intermodal grew 5.1% YoY, higher than than the average 3.6% rise recorded by US railroads (GWR). In the next section, we’ll review Union Pacific’s rail traffic.