Berkshire Hathaway's $44 billion acquisition of Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp. has made for welcome news in an industry that has seen freight-car loadings decline 18% this year through Oct. 24, according to AAR. The takeover "affirms the importance of freight rail to our nation's economic health," said Holly Arthur, spokeswoman for AAR. Freight railroads, such as BNSF, are expected to benefit from federal investment aimed at boosting passenger rail service. The Obama administration is also aware that the industry supports regulatory steps that would help it move freight more efficiently.
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