Commentary: Let’s watch rail freight recovery differently

The statistical coverage of railway freight volume changes in Canada, Mexico and the United States is excellent. But after the extreme changes week over week due to the COVID-19 business impacts, maybe it is time to consider a different method.

Here is why: Weekly reports issued by the Association of American Railroads (AAR) employ a year-over-year comparison template. Most news media and investors follow this same template. For about 50 weeks this year, we have collectively been thinking of rail traffic health as a comparison to the previous year’s 2019 week.

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