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December 2012 U.S. Surface Transportation Trade with Canada and Mexico Totaled $71.9 Billion

Press Release Number: 
BTS 10-13
Date: 
Thursday, February 28, 2013
Media Contact: 
Dave Smallen, 202-366-5568

bts_010_13.pdf | bts_010_13.xlsx

 

Figure 1: North American Surface Transportation Trade: January 2004 - December 2012

(billions of current U.S. dollars)

bts_010_13_figure_01.xlsx

 January 2004 - December 2012

SOURCE: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://transborder.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

Trade using surface transportation between the United States and its North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners, Canada and Mexico, decreased 3.2 percent in December 2012 compared to December 2011, totaling $71.9 billion, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) of the U.S. Department of Transportation (Figure 1 and Table 1). 

BTS, a part of the Department’s Research and Innovative Technology Administration, reported that in December 2012, $48 billion of U.S. trade with Canada and Mexico moved by truck, $14 billion moved by rail, and $6 billion moved by pipeline (Figure 2).   Surface transportation includes freight movements by truck, rail, pipeline, mail, other modes of transport, and goods moving into Foreign Trade Zones. Surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico accounted for 17 percent of total U.S. foreign trade in December 2012.

 

Figure 2: North American Freight by Mode, December 2012

(current U.S. dollars)

bts_010_13_figure_02.xlsx

 North American Freight by Mode, December 2012

SOURCE: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://transborder.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

U.S.-Canada surface trade was $42.1 billion in December 2012, while U.S.-Mexico surface trade was $29.8 billion.  For trade statistics by mode, see Table 3 for Canada and Table 5 for Mexico. 

In December, Michigan led all states in surface trade with Canada, at $5.6 billion (Table 4).  The top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Canada by surface modes of transportation in December was vehicles and parts, valued at $7.8 billion (Table 7). 

Texas continued to lead all states in surface trade with Mexico at $10.3 billion (Table 6).  The top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Mexico by surface modes of transportation in December was electrical machinery with $6.3 billion in trade (Table 8).

For more information, see Transborder Press Releases for previous press releases and summary tables. See TransBorder Freight Data for data from previous months, and individual state data.  BTS has scheduled the release of January TransBorder numbers for March 27. Additionally, the North American Surface Freight Data 2012 Annual Report will be released on March 21.

 

Table 1. Value of Monthly U.S. Surface Transportation Trade with Canada and Mexico

(millions of current U.S. dollars)

Month 2010 2011 2012 Percent Change 2010-2011 Percent Change 2011-2012
January 56,697 67,734 75,534 19.5 11.5
February 59,492 66,534 78,135 11.8 17.4
March 69,943 80,822 85,827 15.6 6.2
April 65,831 73,767 79,784 12.1 8.2
May 66,805 77,318 83,770 15.7 8.3
June 69,859 77,521 82,601 11.0 6.6
July 61,260 72,363 75,694 18.1 4.6
August 67,964 80,406 82,480 18.3 2.6
September 68,324 77,725 77,680 13.8 -0.1
October 70,565 79,040 85,290 12.0 7.9
November 68,060 76,672 81,453 12.7 6.2
December 66,530 74,230 71,886 11.6 -3.2
Annual 791,329 904,133 960,135 14.3 6.2

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://transborder.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

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

 

Table 2. December 2012 U.S. Trade with Canada and Mexico by Mode

(millions of current U.S. dollars)

Mode   December 2011 November 2012 December 2012 Percent Change November 2012 - December 2012 Percent Change December 2011 - 2012
All Surface Modes Imports 40,469 43,616 38,884 -10.9 -3.9
Exports 33,761 37,837 33,002 -12.8 -2.2
Total 74,230 81,453 71,886 -11.7 -3.2
             
Truck Imports 23,999 27,235 23,239 -14.7 -3.2
Exports 26,126 28,945 24,796 -14.3 -5.1
             
Rail Imports 8,689 9,621 9,006 -6.4 3.6
Exports 4,463 5,236 4,697 -10.3 5.2
             
Pipeline Imports 6,398 5,160 5,101 -1.2 -20.3
Exports 583 772 607 -21.4 4.0

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://transborder.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

Notes: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding. Percent change based on numbers prior to rounding. The value of trade for all surface modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail and pipeline modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, other and unknown modes of transportation.  For additional detail refer to the “Data Fields” Section of the TransBorder web page: http://www.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/TBDR_DataFields.html.

 

Table 3. December 2012 U.S. Trade with Canada by Mode

(millions of current U.S. dollars)

Mode   December 2011 November 2012 December 2012 Percent Change November 2012 - December 2012 Percent Change December 2011 - 2012
All Surface Modes Imports 23,819 24,364 22,377 -8.2 -6.1
Exports 20,404 22,306 19,750 -11.5 -3.2
Total 44,223 46,670 42,127 -9.7 -4.7
             
Truck Imports 10,541 11,738 10,130 -13.7 -3.9
Exports 15,702 17,063 14,803 -13.2 -5.7
             
Rail Imports 5,805 6,242 5,903 -5.4 1.7
Exports 2,355 2,569 2,664 3.7 13.1
             
Pipeline Imports 6,375 5,141 5,082 -1.1 -20.3
Exports 348 552 343 -37.9 -1.4

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://transborder.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

Notes: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding. Percent change based on numbers prior to rounding. The value of trade for all surface modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail and pipeline modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, other and unknown modes of transportation.  For additional detail refer to the “Data Fields” Section of the TransBorder web page: http://www.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/TBDR_DataFields.html.

 

Table 4. Top 10 States Trading with Canada by All Surface Modes of Transportation

Ranked by December 2012 Surface Trade Value

(millions of current U.S. dollars)

State December 2011 December 2012 Percent Change December 2011-2012
Value Rank Value Rank
Michigan 5,592 1 5,599 1 0.1
Illinois 4,756 2 4,056 2 -14.7
California 2,844 3 2,754 3 -3.2
Ohio 2,626 4 2,525 4 -3.9
Texas 2,518 5 2,487 5 -1.2
New York 2,336 6 2,177 6 -6.8
Pennsylvania 1,687 7 1,597 7 -5.3
Washington 1,635 8 1,471 8 -10.0
Indiana 1,425 10 1,386 9 -2.8
Minnesota 1,617 9 1,339 10 -17.2

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://transborder.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

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

 

Table 5. December 2012 U.S. Trade with Mexico by Mode

(millions of current U.S. dollars)

Mode   December 2011 November 2012 December 2012 Percent Change November 2012 - December 2012 Percent Change December 2011 - 2012
All Surface Modes Imports 16,649 19,252 16,507 -14.3 -0.9
Exports 13,357 15,531 13,252 -14.7 -0.8
Total 30,007 34,783 29,759 -14.4 -0.8
             
Truck Imports 13,458 15,496 13,110 -15.4 -2.6
Exports 10,424 11,882 9,993 -15.9 -4.1
             
Rail Imports 2,884 3,379 3,102 -8.2 7.6
Exports 2,108 2,667 2,033 -23.8 -3.6
             
Pipeline Imports 22 19 19 -3.4 -16.3
Exports 236 220 264 19.8 11.9

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://transborder.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

Notes: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding. Percent change based on numbers prior to rounding. The value of trade for all surface modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail and pipeline modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, other and unknown modes of transportation.  For additional detail refer to the “Data Fields” Section of the TransBorder web page: http://www.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/TBDR_DataFields.html.

 

Table 6. Top 10 States Trading with Mexico by All Surface Modes of Transportation

Ranked by December 2012 Surface Trade Value

(millions of current U.S. dollars)

State December 2011 December 2012 Percent Change December 2011-2012
Value Rank Value Rank
Texas 10,282 1 10,263 1 -0.2
California 4,459 2 4,242 2 -4.9
Michigan 3,649 3 3,795 3 4.0
Arizona 994 5 1,002 4 0.9
Illinois 1,021 4 979 5 -4.1
Ohio 746 6 783 6 5.1
Tennessee 627 7 629 7 0.3
Georgia 387 12 531 8 37.3
Indiana 509 9 479 9 -5.8
North Carolina 560 8 475 10 -15.2

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://transborder.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

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

 

Table 7. Top Five Commodities Transported between the U.S. and Canada by All Surface Modes of Transportation, December 2012

(millions of current U.S. dollars)

Commodities Exports Imports Total
Vehicles Other than Railway 3,508 4,337 7,845
Oil and Gas 889 6,527 7,416
Computer-Related Machinery and Parts 3,291 1,442 4,732
Electrical Machinery; Equipment and Parts 1,872 486 2,358
Plastics 854 743 1,598

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://transborder.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

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

 

Table 8. Top Five Commodities Transported between the U.S. and Mexico by All Surface Modes of Transportation, December 2012

(millions of current U.S. dollars)

Commodities Exports Imports Total
Electrical Machinery; Equipment and Parts 2,220 4,075 6,295
Vehicles Other than Railway 1,465 4,035 5,500
Computer-Related Machinery and Parts 2,428 2,707 5,135
Plastics 1,018 249 1,266
Measuring and Testing Instruments 371 679 1,049

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://transborder.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

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