The U.S. rail transportation industry saw its profits increase
over the past few years, thanks in part to company leaders’ focus
on energy efficiency and expense reduction. In January 2013,
IBISWorld researchers found that this industry has been revitalized in recent years because
it provides a reliable option for businesses of all sizes. In fact,
IBISWorld industry analyst Lauren Setar stated that despite a
profit decline in 2009, the industry rebounded – its revenue
increased 1.1 percent last year.

“Despite signs of a troubled economy, revenue rose in 2007 and
2008,” Setar said. “Rising fuel prices made rail transportation a
better alternative for shipping.”

Amtrak has been a primary contributor to the rail transportation
industry’s success, and the company accounted for 86.5 percent of
the sector’s revenue in 2012. Additionally, consumer goods and raw
materials could help the segment grow over the next few years.

Setar noted that the U.S. economy’s recovery from the recession
of the late 2000s is important for the country’s rail
transportation industry to expand. If the economy improves, more
manufacturers that require bulk freight could rely on rail
transportation, which could lead railroad companies to increase
their hiring.

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