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United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

North American Transborder Freight down 0.1% in February 2021 from February 2020

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

BTS 29-21
Wednesday, April 28, 2021
BTS Contact: Dave Smallen
Tel: 202-366-5568
david.smallen@dot.gov

 

Transborder freight between the U.S. and North American countries (Canada and Mexico) in February 2021:

  • Total Transborder freight: $95.9 billion of transborder freight moved by all modes of transportation, up 1.7% compared to January 2021 and down 0.1% compared to February 2020.
  • Most-used mode: Trucks moved $59.5 billion of freight, down 2.7% compared to January 2021, down 2.1% compared to February 2020.
  • Second most-used mode: Railways moved $12.8 billion of freight, down 7.5% compared to January 2021, down 10.8% compared to February 2020. The year over year decrease in rail is primarily due to a decline in motor vehicles and parts, the largest commodity moved across the border by rail. 

Total Transborder Freight:

  • Compared to January 2021: 
    U.S.-Canada up 3.6%
    U.S.-Mexico down 0.1%
  • Compared to February 2020: 
    U.S.-Canada down 0.2%
    U.S.-Mexico virtually unchanged

Truck Freight: $59.5 billion (62.0% of all transborder freight)

  • By border: 
    U.S.-Canada: $26.9 billion (56.8% of all northern border freight)
    U.S.-Mexico: $32.6 billion (67.2% of all southern border freight)
  • Compared to January 2021: 
    U.S.-Canada up 1.2%
    U.S.-Mexico down 5.6%
  • Compared to February 2020: 
    U.S.-Canada virtually unchanged
    U.S.-Mexico down 3.8%
  • Top three busiest truck border ports (44.7% of total transborder truck freight)
    • Laredo, TX                         $14.1 billion 
    • Detroit, MI                           $8.0 billion
    • Buffalo-Niagara Falls, NY  $4.5 billion

 

  • Top three truck commodities (46.5% of total transborder truck freight)
    • Computers and parts                $11.2 billion 
    • Electrical machinery                          $8.7 billion
    • Vehicles and parts                          $7.7 billion 

Rail Freight: $12.8 billion (13.4% of all transborder freight)

  • By border: 
    U.S.-Canada: $7.3 billion (15.3% of all northern border freight)
    U.S.-Mexico: $5.6 billion (11.5% of all southern border freight)
  • Compared to January 2021: 
    U.S.-Canada down 2.4%
    U.S.-Mexico down 13.4%
  • Compared to February 2020: 
    U.S.-Canada down 1.2%
    U.S.-Mexico down 20.8%
  • Three busiest rail border ports (51.7% of total transborder rail freight)
    • Laredo, TX                $2.7 billion 
    • Detroit, MI                $2.1 billion
    • Eagle Pass, TX          $1.9 billion

 

  • Top three rail commodities (58.5% of total transborder rail freight)
    • Motor vehicles and parts       $5.6 billion
    • Mineral fuels                            $1.1 billion
    • Wood and articles                   $0.8 billion

Total Transborder Freight by Mode:

U.S.-Canada (both directions)
(Dollars in Billions)
Truck:      $26.9 
Rail:            $7.3 
Pipeline:    $6.1     
Air:             $2.5 
Vessel:       $1.6                 

U.S.-Mexico (both directions)
(Dollars in Billions)
Truck:       $32.6 
Rail:            $5.6 
Vessel:       $4.5     
Pipeline:    $3.2     
Air:             $1.1 

The value of mineral fuels exported to Mexico by pipeline in February 2021 was abnormally high due to price spikes resulting from the mid-February cold weather that caused wide spread power outages in Texas and Mexico.

Reporting Notes
Data in this Bureau of Transportation Statistics release are not seasonally adjusted and are not adjusted for inflation. For previous statistical releases and summary tables, see TransBorder Releases. See TransBorder Freight Data for data from previous months, and for additional state, port, and commodity data. BTS has scheduled the release of March TransBorder numbers for May 26.