Intermodal shipments fell 5 percent as U.S. rail volume slipped by 0.7 percent in the ninth week of the year from the same period a year ago.
Canadian railroads saw a 4.2-percent increase in traffic through March 1, but total volume for the six major North American carriers came to just a 0.1 percent gain over week 9 of 2007.
Grain volume was up 16 percent, and coal loadings increased 6 percent year-over-year, according to figures from the Association of American Railroads. Chemicals gained 5 percent, while motor vehicles fell 2 percent. Paper and lumber slid another 13 percent compared with a weak performance a year ago.
-- Traffic World