North American Transborder Freight Data

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North American Freight Numbers July 2014

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Figure 1.  Percent Change in Value of U.S.-NAFTA Freight Flows by Mode: 
July 2013 - July 2014

Table Version | Excel

Figure 1.  Percent Change in Value of U.S.-NAFTA Freight Flows by Mode:   July 2013 - July 2014

SOURCE: Bureau of Transportation Statistics,

U.S.-NAFTA freight totaled $101.1 billion in July 2014 as all five major transportation modes – air, vessel, pipeline, rail, and trucks – carried more U.S.-NAFTA freight than in July 2013, according to the TransBorder Freight Data released today by theU.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) (Figure 1, Table 1). This is the fifth consecutive month with U.S.-NAFTA freight flows exceeding $100 billion.

Freight by Mode

In July, the value of commodities moving by pipeline grew by the largest percentage of any mode, 10.8 percent. Rail freight increased 10.0 percent followed by a truck increase of 8.5 percent, vessel increase of 5.6 percent, and an air increase of 1.2 percent (Figure 1, Table 2).

Of the $7.9 billion increase in the value of US-NAFTA freight from July 2013, truck freight contributed the most, $4.7 billion, followed by rail, $1.4 billion (Table 2). The trucking increase was due to growth in truck freight with both Mexico, up $2.5 billion, and Canada, up $2.2 billion (Tables 4, 6).

Trucks carry three-fifths of U.S.-NAFTA freight and are the most heavily utilized mode for moving goods to and from both U.S.-NAFTA partners. Trucks carried 59.2 percent of U.S.-NAFTA freight in July 2014, accounting for $30.5 billion of exports and $29.3 billion of imports.

Rail remained the second largest mode, moving 14.8 percent of all U.S.-NAFTA freight, followed by vessel at 9.1 percent, pipeline at 8.5 percent, and air at 3.4 percent. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 82.4 percent of the total U.S.-NAFTA freight flows (Table 2).

U.S.-Canada Freight

Figure 2.  Percent Change in Value of U.S.-Canada Freight Flows by Mode:
July 2013 - July 2014

Table Version | Excel

Figure 2.  Percent Change in Value of U.S.-Canada Freight Flows by Mode: July 2013 - July 2014

SOURCE: Bureau of Transportation Statistics,

Year-to-year, the percent change in the value of U.S.-Canada freight moved by vessel increased the most of any mode, growing 30.9 percent, followed by a pipeline increase of 10.7 percent (Figure 2). The vessel increase was due to a doubling of export value to Canada while imports by vessel fell 2.6 percent.  U.S.-Canada pipeline freight comprised 95.2 percent of total U.S.-NAFTA pipeline freight in July.  Freight moved by rail increased by 8.5 percent, truck by 8.0 percent, and air by 2.0 percent.

Trucks carried 52.7 percent of the $55.2 billion of freight to and from Canada, followed by rail at 15.2 percent, pipeline at 14.8 percent, vessel at 6.3 percent and air at 4.0 percent. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 82.8 percent of the total U.S.-Canada freight flows (Table 4).

U.S.-Mexico Freight

Figure 3.  Percent Change in Value of U.S.-Mexico Freight Flows by Mode:
July 2013 - July 2014

Table Version | Excel

Figure 3.  Percent Change in Value of U.S.-Mexico Freight Flows by Mode: July 2013 - July 2014

SOURCE: Bureau of Transportation Statistics,

Year-to-year, the value of rail freight rose 12.0 percent, the largest percentage increase of any U.S.-Mexico mode (Figure 3). Freight moved by pipeline increased 11.4 percent and truck by 8.8 percent, while air and vessel decreased by 0.1 and 5.3 percent respectively.  The decrease in vessel freight was principally due to a decline in mineral fuels imports.

Trucks carried 66.9 percent of the $45.9 billion of freight to and from Mexico, followed by rail at 14.2 percent, vessel at 12.6 percent, air at 2.7 percent and pipeline at 0.9 percent. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 82.1 percent of the total U.S.-Mexico freight flows (Table 6).

Commodities
In July 2014, the top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Canada was mineral fuels, of which $8.1 billion, or 60.2 percent, moved by pipeline (Table 5). The top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Mexico in July 2014 was electrical machinery, of which $7.6 billion, or 91.7 percent, moved by trucks (Table 7). 

Reporting Notes
Press releases and the BTS website define surface transportation modes as truck, rail and pipeline. See  on the BTS website for additional data for surface modes since 1995 and all modes since 2004. The category of all modes of transportation cited in the following tables includes freight movements by truck, rail, vessel, pipeline, air, and unknown modes of transport.      

Data in this press release are not adjusted for inflation. Additional summary data adjusted for inflation and exchange rates can be found on the BTS website under . The BLS indexes used in the adjustments for inflation and exchange rates may be revised in each of the three months after original publication. For more information, see TransBorder Press Releases  for previous press releases and summary tables. See for data from previous months, and more state, port, or commodity data.  BTS has scheduled the release of August TransBorder numbers for Oct. 23.

Table 1. Value of Monthly U.S.-NAFTA Freight Flows

(millions of current dollars)

Month201220132014Percent Change 2012-2013Percent Change 2013-2014
January87,49090,51290,3263.5-0.2
February89,38588,44989,557-1.01.3
March99,51095,566101,478-4.06.2
April92,19998,984100,1417.41.2
May96,84098,577103,9421.85.4
June94,20093,483102,978-0.810.2
July87,69193,192101,0756.38.5
August94,59396,526 2.0 
September89,87594,350 5.0 
October98,632103,089 4.5 
November94,87796,120 1.3 
December84,69590,083 6.4 
Year-to-date647,316658,763689,4971.84.7
Annual1,109,9881,138,931 2.6 

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, TransBorder Freight Data,

Note: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding. Percent change based on numbers prior to rounding.

Table 2. Value of Monthly U.S.-NAFTA Freight Flows by Mode of Transportation

(millions of current dollars)

Mode July 2013July 2014Percent Change July 2013-2014
All ModesImports50,03954,2818.5
Exports43,15346,7948.4
Total93,192101,0758.5
All Surface ModesImports41,43745,97410.9
Exports35,03837,3576.6
Total76,47583,3319.0
TruckImports26,27229,29411.5
Exports28,88330,5225.7
Total55,15459,8168.5
RailImports8,7089,3627.5
Exports4,8695,57614.5
Total13,57714,93810.0
PipelineImports6,4577,31813.3
Exports1,2861,259-2.0
Total7,7438,57810.8
VesselImports5,4314,981-8.3
Exports3,3244,26628.3
Total8,7559,2475.6
AirImports1,4031,4301.9
Exports2,0272,0430.8
Total3,4303,4731.2

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, TransBorder Freight Data,

Notes: Numbers might not add to totals due to rounding. Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding. The value of trade for all modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail, pipeline, vessel and air modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, and other transportation. For additional detail, please refer to the "Data Fields" section of the TransBorder web page: .

Table 3. Percent Change in Value of U.S.-NAFTA Freight Flows by Mode

July 2014 Compared to July in...Percent Change
TruckRailPipelineAirVesselAll Modes
20138.510.010.81.25.68.5
201214.215.038.47.95.415.3
201120.724.120.10.71.219.0
201035.268.970.4-13.730.439.6
200962.0115.991.38.571.268.0
200827.829.0-6.4-0.9-15.517.4
200740.447.370.220.741.441.9
200650.668.799.623.644.855.2
200570.497.9124.041.590.977.4
200474.6103.3150.340.5150.186.3

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, TransBorder Freight Data,

Note: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding. Percent change based on numbers prior to rounding.

Table 4. Value of Monthly U.S.-Canada Freight Flows by Mode of Transportation

(millions of current dollars)

Mode July 2013July 2014Percent Change July 2013-2014
All ModesImports26,35529,16510.7
Exports23,59126,02810.3
Total49,94655,19310.5
All Surface ModesImports22,66825,14510.9
Exports19,38820,5315.9
Total42,05645,6758.6
TruckImports11,09212,41311.9
Exports15,84116,6885.3
Total26,93329,1018.0
RailImports5,1365,4325.8
Exports2,6112,97413.9
Total7,7478,4068.5
PipelineImports6,4407,30013.4
Exports936869-7.2
Total7,3768,16910.7
VesselImports1,7811,734-2.6
Exports8641,730100.2
Total2,6453,46330.9
AirImports8388511.5
Exports1,3451,3762.3
Total2,1832,2272.0

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, TransBorder Freight Data,

Notes: Numbers might not add to totals due to rounding. Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding. The value of trade for all modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail, pipeline, vessel and air modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, and other transportation. For additional detail, please refer to the "Data Fields" section of the TransBorder web page: .

Table 5. Top Commodity Transported between the U.S. and Canada for Each Mode of Transportation, July 2014

(millions of current dollars)

ModeCommoditiesExportsImportsTotal
All ModesMineral Fuels; Oils and Waxes3,03710,44113,478
TruckVehicles Other than Railway2,8462,2005,046
RailVehicles Other than Railway8881,6992,587
PipelineMineral Fuels; Oils and Waxes8587,2598,118
VesselMineral Fuels; Oils and Waxes1,5161,4542,971
AirElectrical Machinery; Equipment and Parts325147471

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, TransBorder Freight Data,

Note: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding.

Table 6. Value of Monthly U.S.-Mexico Freight Flows by Mode of Transportation

(millions of current dollars)

Mode July 2013July 2014Percent Change July 2013-2014
All ModesImports23,68425,1166.0
Exports19,56220,7666.2
Total43,24645,8826.1
All Surface ModesImports18,76920,82911.0
Exports15,65016,8277.5
Total34,41937,6569.4
TruckImports15,17916,88111.2
Exports13,04213,8346.1
Total28,22130,7158.8
RailImports3,5723,93010.0
Exports2,2582,60215.2
Total5,8316,53212.0
PipelineImports17185.1
Exports34939011.7
Total36740911.4
VesselImports3,6503,247-11.0
Exports2,4592,5363.1
Total6,1105,784-5.3
AirImports5645792.6
Exports683667-2.3
Total1,2471,245-0.1

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, TransBorder Freight Data,

Notes: Numbers might not add to totals due to rounding. Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding. The value of trade for all modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail, pipeline, vessel and air modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, and other transportation. For additional detail, please refer to the "Data Fields" section of the TransBorder web page: .

Table 7. Top Commodity Transported between the U.S. and Mexico for Each Mode of Transportation, July 2014

(millions of current dollars)

ModeCommoditiesExportsImportsTotal
All ModesElectrical Machinery; Equipment and Parts3,3004,9488,248
TruckElectrical Machinery; Equipment and Parts2,9674,6007,567
RailVehicles Other than Railway5912,8543,446
PipelineMineral Fuels; Oils and Waxes39018409
VesselMineral Fuels; Oils and Waxes1,5692,3963,964
AirElectrical Machinery; Equipment and Parts234191425

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, TransBorder Freight Data,

Note: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding.

Updated: Thursday, December 7, 2017
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