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Canadian rail freight volume was down by 8.2% in May

July 27, 2016

Statistics Canada announced that the country's railways carried a total of 27.7 million tonnes of freight in May, an 8.2% decrease from the same month last year.

The Federal agency reports that total rail freight originating in Canada declined 7.7% from the same month last year to 24.9 million tonnes.

Non-intermodal freight dropped 7.1% to 271,000 carloads in May. The decrease mainly reflected lower loadings of wheat, potash, iron ore and concentrates, and fuel oils and crude petroleum. The tonnage of coal, potash, and fuel oils and crude petroleum shipped by rail has fallen year over year for seven consecutive months. Railcars loaded with fuel oils and crude petroleum in the western region were down 44.8% from the same month last year.

Intermodal freight loadings were down 4.3% year over year to 187,000 units. In terms of weight, intermodal traffic fell 4.1% to 2.8 million tonnes, as a result of a decrease in shipments in containers and trailers on flat cars.

Freight traffic received from the United States declined 12.0% to 2.7 million tonnes, as a result of a 13.4% drop in non-intermodal freight. Intermodal freight from the United States rose 5.2%.

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