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NAFTA Freight Flow Values Surge in March but Fall from Previous Year

Wednesday, June 01, 2016
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

The value of monthly freight flows between the U.S. and its NAFTA partners rose 7.6 percent from February to March to $90.5 billion, according to statistics released May 26 by the Department of Transportation. However, the value of NAFTA freight flows was down 5.8 percent from a year earlier.

Month-to-Month Changes. Percentage changes in the value of monthly U.S. freight flows by mode of transportation from February to March include the following.

 

Total

Canada

Mexico

 

Imports

Exports

Imports

Exports

Imports

Exports

Truck

+7.0

+7.8

+7.2

+12.2

+6.9

+3.2

Rail

+6.4

+8.8

+8.6

+17.8

+3.6

+0.2

Vessel

+2.9

+23.7

+4.9

-37.0

+1.5

+44.8

Air

+6.2

+18.2

+1.8

+20.5

+14.0

+14.2

Pipeline

-6.1

+1.8

-6.1

+3.8

-5.6

-2.9

Year-on-Year Changes. The value of total U.S. trade with Canada was down 8.8 percent from March 2015 as all modes of transportation carried a lower value of freight than a year earlier. The value of U.S. trade with Mexico fell 2.6 percent as all modes except truck carried a lower value of freight. Vehicles and parts retained their spot as the top commodity category for all modes transported between the U.S. and Canada, while electrical machinery regained the top spot in U.S.-Mexico trade.

Percentage changes in the value of monthly U.S. freight flows by mode of transportation from March 2015 to March 2016 include the following.

 

Total

Canada

Mexico

 

Imports

Exports

Imports

Exports

Imports

Exports

Truck

+2.6

-4.7

+1.9

-6.8

+3.0

-2.3

Rail

-9.0

-5.0

-8.4

-3.9

-9.8

-6.4

Vessel

-41.7

-18.9

-41.2

-70.5

-42.0

+10.5

Air

+0.4

-14.7

+1.6

-13.8

-1.2

-16.3

Pipeline

-38.8

-7.1

-39.1

-1.8

+132.2

-18.1

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