OTTAWA, Ont. — Business slowed for the nation’s railways in January as freight showed a slight decline in most commodity groups, Statistics Canada reports.
Railways loadings fell 5.5% to 21.8 million metric tonnes in January following a 7.0% decline in December.
Loadings of wheat, other cereal grains and colza combined fell by about 350,000 metric tonnes, while sulphur and other non metallic minerals came in 160,000 tonnes below December’s levels. Loadings of alumina fell by 117,000 tonnes and forest products lost about 173,000 tonnes. Overall loadings went down by about 1.2 millions tonnes.
Non-intermodal loadings totalled 19.7 million tonnes, down 5.8% from December. About 248,000 carloads were required to carry the non-intermodal freight in January.
Loadings of intermodal freight, that is, containers and trailers hauled on flat cars, fell 2.1% to 2.1 million tonnes. In January, freight arriving from the United States, either destined for or passing through Canada, totalled 2.3 million tonnes, down 1.2% from December.
Compared with January 2004, non-intermodal loadings were up 4.9%, while intermodal rose 5.0%. Traffic received from the United States was up 5.3% over the same period.
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