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Railcar Loadings Drop Most Year-To-Date Since Crisis

Tyler Durden's picture


This must be bullish. While the rise in railcar loadings (whether driven by the rotation from pipelines to rail or a 'real' recovery in the economy) has been impressive off the lows and had got back to pre-recession levels, this year is not looking so good. The typical seasonal pattern - somewhat obviously - starts around mid January and rises all year tending to roll over around the start of November into holiday season. 1995 was the last year that intermodal railcar loadings rolled over notably away from this pattern. Since mid-January, 2013 has seen a notably different pattern from the norm - worse than 2009's abrupt plunge.


This time it's different...


notably different...


Charts: Bloomberg


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Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:54 | 3442162 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Warren Buffet can suffocate in his own bathtub filled with bullshit for all I care... [with Becky QUICK ~ clamped to his DICK]

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:59 | 3442207 DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture

+ 1 Mr. Sawyer!  Buffett is a parasite on the economy...

Lower railcar loadings and pretty low Baltic Dry Index numbers are sobering...

Does anyone know if there is an index for containerload prices...?

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:03 | 3442217 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Wouldn't this be due to the lack of needing to unload trains full of biofuel?

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:41 | 3442386 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

One would hope so... I prefer 'corn on the cob', then, wiping my ass with the dried cob from an ungenetically modified seed... to distilling Monsanto fucking franken-seeds, to fill up Al Gore's SUV caravan...

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:11 | 3442247 McMolotov
McMolotov's picture

All I know is that my personal "WTF?! Index" has never been higher. The world appears to be spinning off its axis, and most people remain completely oblivious to what's coming.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:21 | 3442296 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

I keep waiting for the IRS to go ballastic, in a pointedly hollow fashion.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:30 | 3442330 akak
akak's picture

Also for DHS to "go ballistic", as it were.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:33 | 3442339 DeadFred
DeadFred's picture

Today ranks really high on the WTF scale that's for sure.

Makes me wonder if someone knows something that the rest of us will  find out soon enough. It is Friday, who is going to be downgraded at 4 PM?

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:33 | 3442351 Dishonesty Fatigue
Dishonesty Fatigue's picture

Well said. Distortion is everywhere like in a carnival hall of mirrors. At first it's amusing, then it's unnerving, and finally it gets terrifying.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:37 | 3442372 I am more equal...
I am more equal than others's picture

According to Nassim Taleb most people cannot factor in negative outcomes in their decision making process.  The 'alternative universe' concept where bad things happen is too complex.  Estimating the probability of a total meltdown is overwhelming.  Additionally, there has been no such events to which a person can compare their circumstances with historical events (availability and anchoring heuristics). 

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:55 | 3442478 Citxmech
Citxmech's picture

"According to Nassim Taleb most people cannot factor in negative outcomes in their decision making process."

Wow - that's pretty disadvantageous from a Darwinian point of view if it's true.

I was just discussing this with my wife yesterday - we pretty much take a "prepare for the worst, hope for the best" approach.  I seems to us to be a perfect "Pascal's wager":  When things go better than planned, no harm no foul - we're insured, but if/when they do go to shit - we'll be as covered as we can be.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 19:06 | 3443270 I am more equal...
I am more equal than others's picture

Nassim presents the 'Turkey' story that demonstrates the incomprehensible nature of factoring in negative outcome.  Check out his website.  He has a lot of good stuff. 

Summation of the 'Turkey' story- everything is fine until it is not.  He also knocks social darwainism - the game of roulette (alternative outcomes or universes) is used to show the pure silliness of that concept.  Darwainism is in the same line of thinking as karma.  Good things happen to those who adapt. 

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:58 | 3442481 Van Halen
Van Halen's picture

McMolotov has a point - it seems that the worse the news gets, the more bullish the markets and the harder the Drive-By Media spin this for low information voters. It all seems designed to keep the current administration insulated from any kind of criticism whatsoever.
In the United States, we're letting about 3000 of them control 320 million of us.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:13 | 3442262 Quant Jockey
Quant Jockey's picture

Corrugated carboard use is another great indicator of activity.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 11:37 | 3444493 Tijuana Donkey Show
Tijuana Donkey Show's picture

In the housing market? 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:12 | 3444845 _ConanTheLibert...
_ConanTheLibertarian_'s picture

Hey, at least mine is free-standing

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 16:21 | 3442606 OutLookingIn
OutLookingIn's picture

@ DoChen;

Shipping news and containers costs.

Hapag-Lloyd ended merger talks between Germany's two biggest container shipping companies. Hamburg based Hapag-Lloyd says it's full-year (2012) net loss widened to 128 million Euros from 29 million Euros a year earlier.

Hanjin Shipping and Hapag-Lloyd have joined OOCL and Maersk in announcing container shipping rate hikes of between $200-$500 USD per TEU (twenty foot equivelent unit) container effective April 1, 2013.

The average global container (TEU) freight rate last year (2012) was $1,581.00 USD per unit.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 21:29 | 3443702 DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture

Thank you!  Muy amable!

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:00 | 3442214 HD
HD's picture

Buffet's last words, "Becky...Quick!!!"

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:36 | 3442376 CheapBastard
CheapBastard's picture

More room for the Hobos if the rail cars are empty. Bullish for them!

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 05:50 | 3444212 brettd
brettd's picture

That's not very nice.

Your punishment is to pay MORE taxes to save Warren's Social Security check!


Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:52 | 3442163 bnbdnb
bnbdnb's picture

Its just more efficienct. DUH

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:05 | 3442223 wee-weed up
wee-weed up's picture

Yep, looks like the only thing being "railroaded" is the American people...

by the Obama Admin and their lapdog MSM.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 17:52 | 3443061 StarTedStackin'
StarTedStackin''s picture

no no no you have it all wrong.....


 Both parties are the same.....


If it happened on Obama's watch, it IS Bush's fault.........



and a vote for Ron Paul in the Presidential election really was NOT a vote for the Obowel Movement.......





uh huh!



Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:53 | 3442170 Dagny Taggart
Dagny Taggart's picture

Atlas is Shrugging

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:58 | 3442190 DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture

+ 1

That might be it, Dagny!  There is a LOT to be said for a shrug now...

I am on my way to the LCS to buy some more Au.  Look for a Central Bank announcement later...

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:58 | 3442191 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Agreed! And it appears to be accelerating.

<Careful with the shrugging though or you might become a hunchback.> :)

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:21 | 3442286 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

Atlas Shrugged needs to be moved from the Fiction category to Documentary

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 17:48 | 3443047 Random_Robert
Random_Robert's picture

As do "1984" and "Brave New World"



Fri, 04/12/2013 - 18:16 | 3443119 flapdoodle
flapdoodle's picture

With "Soylent Green" on deck...

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 19:43 | 3443381 Abi Normal
Abi Normal's picture

Don't forget Animal Farm - Winston

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:54 | 3442173 akak
akak's picture

Now even the hobos are being edged out.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:56 | 3442189 francis_sawyer
Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:59 | 3442204 akak
akak's picture

I met the "official" King of the Hobos on a train once, many years ago.  He had ridden the rails all over the USA during the Great Depression.

Today he would probably be considered a terrorist.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:04 | 3442225 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

... Or a tour-rorist

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:11 | 3442258 McMolotov
Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:22 | 3442292 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Woody Guthrie

[sung by Peter, Paul, & Mary]


'This train don't carry no gamblers, this train.
This train don't carry no gamblers, this train.
This train don't carry no gamblers,
No crap shooters, no midnight ramblers,
This train don't carry no gamblers, this train.

This train, don't carry no jokers, well, this train.
This train, don't carry no jokers, well, this train.
This train, don't carry no jokers,
No high-tone women, no cigar smokers, well
This train, don't carry no jokers, well, this train.

This train, done carried my mother, well, this train.
This train, done carried my mother, well, this train.
This train, done carried my mother,
My mother, my father, my sister and my brother,
This train, done carried my mother, well this train.

This train, she's bound for glory, well, this train
This train, she's bound for glory, well, this train
This train, she's bound for glory, well, this train
This train, she's bound for glory,
If you want to get to heaven then you've got to be holy, well,
This train, she's bound for glory, well, this train'


Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:05 | 3442226 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

@akak ~ Emperor(s) of the North


RIP Ernest Borgnine & Lee Marvin... May they 'BLOB UP' in heaven...

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:24 | 3442304 oddjob
oddjob's picture

Hey kid you got no class. Hit the bums, kid. Run like the devil. Get a tin can and take up mooching. Knock on back doors for a nickel.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:32 | 3442337 akak
akak's picture

I can tell you from bitter (if not recent) experience, Hell hath no fury like a RR yard dick.

Those goons are perfect material for the DHS.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 16:49 | 3442819 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

I hear ya... & I can imagine...


But since we're in a NEW PARADIGM... Maybe one could offer them 'bitcoins' to get them off ur jock... LOL

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:59 | 3442210 yrbmegr
yrbmegr's picture

Yes, subsistence is getting competitive.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 17:49 | 3443059 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

akak said:

Now even the hobos are being edged out.

Ah, ah, where is the dividend of the US hobbo on everything?

Of course, US 'american' citizens are driving the bus. But driving the bus does not mean full control over it like pushing speed up beyond what the bus can deliver.

People usually take the Iceland train far too late, only looking at the latest events. They had their fix when Rick "The Face Of Chineses" Shaw got booted out of WWE by US 'american' citizen Mighty Igor.

One incredible thing: people thinking it could be other way.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 18:14 | 3443107 akak
akak's picture

Of course, US 'american' citizens are driving the bus. But driving the bus does not mean full control over it like pushing speed up beyond what the bus can deliver.


Much of truthiness here, yet driving of buses is the least of it when US 'american' citizenism comes into the play.

Consumption, consumption is the mettle of 'american' citizen eternal nature.

Not being good consumptionizers, lacking skills in blobbing-up, the hobbos of USA are forced to the exterior of 'american' society.  They are not holding power, not the middle class, therefore not the king class.

In US 'american' citizenism, holding power is a middle-class thing. 

But like always, US 'americans' will seek symmetry in the inability to self-indict and forcing blame to the exterior while farming the poor and extorting the weak.  Eternal nature, ah the duplicity!

Monolizing the means of all, 'American' style.  Expect more, expect less.

Life is always good for 'americans'.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 18:38 | 3443191 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

Not being good consumptionizers, lacking skills in blobbing-up, the hobbos of USA are forced to the exterior of 'american' society.  They are not holding power, not the middle class, therefore not the king class.



This leads goods to move to the consumption zone without ever stopping to Iceland. That is the US 'american' citizenism ghost town effect, illustrated by many times on the US. You know, when a US 'american' town saw less and less the trains stopping by as it was more profitable retainment the cargo to sell it on the mega city nextby.



But like always, US 'americans' will seek symmetry in the inability to self-indict and forcing blame to the exterior while farming the poor and extorting the weak.  Eternal nature, ah the duplicity!



Absolutely right. Not only that, but it is reported on a daily basis. The US, always so keen on pointing fingers at others, reversely fail to pass its own tests. Always the duplicitations poured on.

US 'american' hobbos are tossed out of the salad bowl. They do not opposse the process by itself. They opposse being left in behind. They want to jump on the train and not be left on the spur track undressinged.

That is what you get when US 'american' citizens disscus everything but reality. Train conductor spoke to cover tracks or infuriate people by showing them while being naked, he can still force them to behave as if he is dressinged.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:58 | 3442195 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

Oh in just a few more days that ole trickle down will come through! I'm ready to lick it up off the boots of the oligarchs!

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:01 | 3442218 DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture

Yum!  But, I'll let you go first...  LOL...

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:57 | 3442197 yrbmegr
yrbmegr's picture

Brief note to Ben Bernanke.  Please stop buying paper from the banks.  It's not helping.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:33 | 3442349 Bastiat
Bastiat's picture

Another brief note to Bernanke: 


Nice depression you've got started here, asshole.

PS:  Fuck you.

rude letter to follow

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 14:59 | 3442198 Glass Seagull
Glass Seagull's picture



even better....look at railcar loadings of waste and scrap.  you cannot have waste and scrap without production and/or consumption.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:02 | 3442215 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

Breaking:....Bernanke fires helicopters, hires rail cars to deliver fiat....Buffet suggests hiring hobos to shovel

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:04 | 3442229 Dagny Taggart
Dagny Taggart's picture

On a side note: steel railcars make excellent faraday cages. You can pick them up for a song these days.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 16:11 | 3442369 css1971
css1971's picture

Better off with a container. Multi modal.

Speaking of which. When the next downturn gets going why not turn all the unused containers into housing for the middle classes who can't afford real houses any more?


Fri, 04/12/2013 - 16:15 | 3442575 akak
akak's picture

Don't worry, these figures will turn upward significantly once the FEMA shacklecars get rolling.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 19:59 | 3443430 Abi Normal
Abi Normal's picture

Head 'em up, move 'em out, Rawhide!

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:50 | 3442441 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

Shipping containers would work as well. Less logistically challenging

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:06 | 3442230 WTF_247
WTF_247's picture

So bullish for transports.

Hence why you see them continuing to power higher. Once you free yourself of real world constraints such as actual car loadings, the sky is the limit.  Why worry about revenues or miles?

Why sell when you can just keep buying.  Eventually it will turn around - think of how much you will make when it does if you get your full position now!

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:06 | 3442231 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Speaking of dropping a load....I'll be back in a few minutes.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:31 | 3442333 insanelysane
insanelysane's picture

Bullish corn!

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:33 | 3442345 akak
akak's picture

And poppy seeds, and red pepper flakes!

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:47 | 3442435 1000 splendid suns
1000 splendid suns's picture

Make sure you have enough of Benny Shalom's green toilet paper.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:56 | 3442479 akak
akak's picture

Now with 25% more manufacturer-applied fecal matter!

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 20:00 | 3443434 Abi Normal
Abi Normal's picture

Bullish leg irons and shackles

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:07 | 3442235 vote_libertaria...
vote_libertarian_party's picture

But is it BETTER....THAN....EXPECTED!!!

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:10 | 3442245 The Dancer
The Dancer's picture

I think what ole' Warren is counting on is for Homeland Security to be shipping all those mini tanks all around Amerika to keep all you terrorists under control.....just in case the drones don't work out...

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:25 | 3442319 RobD
RobD's picture

Speaking of that I saw two of those tanks/armored cars going north out of Reno on US 395 this morning. One each on a flatbed simi. Have been seeing a lot of old M113 armored personnel carriers going south the same way in the last few months. Could be nothing as we do have the Sierra Army Depot north of here.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 18:07 | 3443099 willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

I live near the Norfolk NAS base in VA and their F18s & Radars have been doing practice flys for over a month in all kinds of weather-sometimes until 2AM. I have'nt seen this much activity since the pre-Iraq invasion.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:10 | 3442246 jtz5
jtz5's picture

I have been on the wrong side of the stock market for a while now, but something just is starting to feel a little different out there.  I have a feeling that market surge is about to end and we begin to see some reality back in these markets.  Just a hunch.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:14 | 3442257 the not so migh...
the not so mighty maximiza's picture

your hunch is wrong, the dow will blow past 50,000 and we will all be hunting squirrals in central park.  Recovery hunt bitchez.


Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:17 | 3442273 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

Reality was banned from participating in the market. Didn't you get the memo?

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:24 | 3442303 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

So... what is this 'market' of which you speak?

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:16 | 3442269 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

Don't worry, they'll "fix it" during the 3:30 pm ramp-job...which appears to be getting started a tad early today.

watch these fuckers close the market green and slam gold and silver one last time before the bell.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:22 | 3442299 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

and there goes Gold. New LOD. Silver to follow shortly.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:19 | 3442282 ali-ali-al-qomfri
ali-ali-al-qomfri's picture

Oh no we have moved from the ‘Bactrian Caravan’, in the second phase of a quadra-hump of the grand V pattern, to a full blown Stegosaurus pattern run, watch for the spikes at the end.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:21 | 3442284 oddjob
oddjob's picture

Traffic should pick up when the red line gets moving.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:23 | 3442306 YHC-FTSE
YHC-FTSE's picture


Posted this at the end of First Bitcoin, Now Gold: All Alternative Currencies Must be Crushed. 

The biggest Euro Bitcoin Exchange has been shut down and its bank account frozen by the Polish authorities.

Our Service is momentarily not available.
1. All funds (EUR, USD, PLN, GBP & Bitcoins) are safe.
2. All withdrawals will be gradually processed chronologically from another bank account.
3. The Polish authority closed your Bank account in Poland.
4. Our lawyers are working with high pressure on a solution.

We will back with Bitcoin-24 2.0 on when all declarations are finished.

All important Emails can be send to

Not quite sure how withdrawls can be processed when they have no way to access their account on the website, but it all sounds...reassuring?


Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:38 | 3442316 ekm
ekm's picture

It reminded me of the crude oil sea tankers that were losing money because they couldn't afford..................fuel.


This is tragically funny.

It will come a time that Obama, Boehner, Draghi, Cameron, Merkel, Abe will eventually understand that FUELS are the ones powering the economy, not money out of nothing.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:26 | 3442321 Iam Yue2
Iam Yue2's picture

Move along now .......

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:30 | 3442332 The Dancer
The Dancer's picture

TPPT is still alive and well, so far...I figure it's going to take a full fledged panic of some sort to crach this puppy...a real big surprise that catches a lot of folks off guard...and if enough rush the exits big time...well, we might see some fireworks.....the paradigm has got to be broken...

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:30 | 3442335 WillyGroper
WillyGroper's picture

Never fear, the Oracle will soon see a major pickup in human cargo.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:30 | 3442336 venturen
venturen's picture

Bernanke and Obama are going to just pay to have the trains go back and make it look like something is happening. Maybe we could get a good communists to be incharge of stats. 

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:43 | 3442410 pine_marten
pine_marten's picture

Put DHS in charge of the rails.  Make them into moving detention centers for sovereign types. 

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:49 | 3442449 orangegeek
orangegeek's picture

Who gives a fuck about railcar loadings?


The Dow Transports are coming off historical highs three weeks ago and are up 1.65% this week - setting up for more historical highs.


Transporting product is irrelevant now.  The share price says everything is great.  Whatever makes Barry and Warren Buffet happy.


Everyone take next week off - the market is doing fine and we have nothing to worry about.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:55 | 3442469 akak
akak's picture

What you say in jest, the corporate-controlled media says in all seriousness.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:52 | 3442453 LostAtSea
LostAtSea's picture

I could hear that train a runin'
From the Gulf through Austin
And points on further out

I could hear it two or three a day
Before two-thousand and eight
Then it went silent months on en'

Came back for a while
Tho not so strong
Then if fell silent in '13
And I fear it ain't 'er comin' back


Fri, 04/12/2013 - 15:58 | 3442485 RichardENixon
RichardENixon's picture

The obvious solution to this apparent disparity is to load up the railcars with empty containers and send them on their way.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 16:06 | 3442490 bnbdnb
bnbdnb's picture

Is it just me, or has oil actually broken through its wedge to the downside?

Bear flag?

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 16:55 | 3442813 VelvetHog
VelvetHog's picture

Drive through rural America right now.  There many many miles of empty trains that have been parked on the tracks and haven't been moved in years.  Rust and weeds everywhere.  Not to mention the abandoned lines and spurs. 

Go ahead.  Take a drive.  See for your self.  Check out US50 from Salida to Canon City, Colorado along the Arkansas River for starters.

Oh yeah, almost forgot.  DJIA at 21000 and change by December.  (me funny)

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 18:30 | 3443170 willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

Yup and Gold @ $500. Never under-estimate the chicanery of the powers-that-be who want to keep it that way.

Fri, 04/12/2013 - 18:37 | 3443195 NMC_EXP
NMC_EXP's picture



Go ahead. Take a drive. See for your self. Check out US50 from Salida to Canon City, Colorado along the Arkansas River for starters.

I've seen that line of idle hopper cars many times.  Been there for at least five years.

They will soon be moved so as not to ruin the view of Christo's "Over the River" project in which he proposes to drape acres of fabric over the Arkansas River.

Who pays for crap like that?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 12:28 | 3444603 Herkimer Jerkimer
Herkimer Jerkimer's picture





And in other unsurprising news posted today…


WARREN BUFFETT WINS AGAIN: Train Traffic Is Going Through The Roof


Who's lyin?

My commentary is there.


SweetDoug aka HJ.




Just for clariy, I'm gonna go with… Tyler Durden and ZeroHedge!

I always like the pretty coloured graphs he posts.


Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!