Rail Traffic Shows Improvement Despite Coal Demand Collapse

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Rail Traffic Shows Improvement Despite Coal Demand Collapse
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Rail Traffic Shows Improvement Despite Coal Demand Collapse

Total N. American rail traffic came in at 693K cars last week, flat over the previous week but up from ’11.

Capture564 Rail Traffic Remains Elevated

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As usual, accounting for the collapse in coal being shipped by rail due to the switch to natural gas, traffic would have been easily above the 700k mark again. On both charts I have marked in red the corresponding week to show the increased rail traffic and decreased coal traffic.

Coal:
Capture1195 Rail Traffic Remains Elevated

It is pretty clear the continued YOY growth in rail traffic implies continued overall economic growth for the US. We should also note that while there is continued growth, it is by no means spectacular so one not ought to expect GDP to grow 3% either. Steady moderate growth seems to b the plan….

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Todd Sullivan is a Massachusetts-based value investor and a General Partner in Rand Strategic Partners. He looks for investments he believes are selling for a discount to their intrinsic value given their current situation and future prospects. He holds them until that value is realized or the fundamentals change in a way that no longer support his thesis. His blog features his various ideas and commentary and he updates readers on their progress in a timely fashion. His commentary has been seen in the online versions of the Wall St. Journal, New York Times, CNN Money, Business Week, Crain’s NY, Kiplingers and other publications. He has also appeared on Fox Business News & Fox News and is a RealMoney.com contributor. His commentary on Starbucks during 2008 was recently quoted by its Founder Howard Schultz in his recent book “Onward”. In 2011 he was asked to present an investment idea at Bill Ackman’s “Harbor Investment Conference”.

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