BTS Releases June 2015 North American Freight Transportation Numbers
The value of U.S.-NAFTA freight totaled $99.0 billion in June 2015 as all modes except truck carried less U.S.-NAFTA freight than in June 2014, according to the TransBorder Freight Data released today by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS). Year-over-year, the value of U.S.-NAFTA freight flows by all modes decreased by 3.8 percent. Large decreases in the value of NAFTA trade by pipeline and vessel in June were due to the reduced unit price of mineral fuel shipments.
Freight by Mode
In June 2015 compared to June 2014, the value of commodities moving by truck increased by 5.1 percent, while rail decreased by 4.5 percent and air by 8.9 percent. Vessel freight values decreased by 24.4 percent and pipeline freight decreased by 40.0 percent mainly due to the lower unit price of mineral fuel shipments.
Trucks carried 65.0 percent of U.S.-NAFTA freight and are the most heavily utilized mode for moving goods to and from both U.S.-NAFTA partners. Trucks accounted for $33.2 billion of the $53.8 billion of imports (61.6 percent) and $31.2 billion of the $45.2 billion of exports (69.0 percent).
Rail remained the second largest mode by value, moving 14.9 percent of all U.S.-NAFTA freight, followed by vessel, 7.0 percent; pipeline, 5.0 percent; and air, 3.6 percent. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 84.8 percent of the total U.S.-NAFTA freight flows.
U.S.-Canada Freight Transportation
The value of U.S.-Canada freight totaled $52.0 billion in June 2015, down 10.3 percent from June 2014, as all modes of transportation carried a lower value of U.S.-Canada freight than a year earlier. A recession in Canada likely contributed to the decrease of U.S.-Canada freight flows.
Lower mineral fuel prices contributed to a year-over-year decrease in the value of rail freight, down 11.7 percent. Mineral fuels are a large share of freight carried by vessel, which was down 21.7 percent year-over-year, and pipeline, down 41.0 percent.
Trucks carried 59.7 percent of the $52.0 billion of freight to and from Canada, followed by rail, 15.2 percent; pipeline, 8.8 percent; vessel, 5.4 percent; and air, 4.3 percent. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 83.7 percent of the total U.S.-Canada freight flows.
The value of U.S.-Mexico freight totaled $47.1 billion in June 2015, up 4.4 percent from June 2014, as three out of five transportation modes – truck, rail and air – carried more U.S.-Mexico freight than in June 2014. Year-over-year, the value of U.S.-Mexico truck freight rose 10.5 percent, the largest percentage increase of any mode. Freight carried by rail increased by 5.4 percent and freight by air increased by 0.6 percent. Pipeline freight decreased by 24.3 percent and vessel freight decreased by 26.1 percent, mainly due to lower mineral fuel prices.
Trucks carried 70.8 percent of the $47.1 billion of freight to and from Mexico, followed by rail, 14.4 percent; vessel, 8.7 percent; air, 2.8 percent; and pipeline, 0.8 percent. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 86.0 percent of the total U.S.-Mexico freight flows.
Source: BTS Transborder Data Release for summary tables and additional data. See North American Transborder Freight Data on the BTS website for additional data for surface modes since 1995 and all modes since 2004.