Great Railroad Boom of 2014 Can No Longer Be Ignored: StockTwits

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Railroad stocks have been ripping higher all year.

Just go down the list and you'll see. Canadian Pacific (CP) is up 21% on a year-to-date basis. Union Pacific (UNP) is up 20%, Norfolk Southern  (NSC) 13%, CSX (CSX) 10%, Canadian National Railway (CNI) 15% and GATX (GMT) 36%.

When you add up the increase in market cap for all of the railroad stocks we just mentioned, the figure exceeds $50 billion. The Dow Jones U.S. Railroad Index is at an all-time high and the chart is absolutely tantalizing.

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Increased rail traffic is partly responsible for the boom. The Association of American Railroads recently reported that all 10 carload groups -- including chemicals, coal, grains and motor vehicles -- recorded increases when compared to the same week in 2013.

On StockTwits, this has been an economic development that many are talking about. And it just might be pointing to a continued economic expansion that cannot be ignored much longer:

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