IMPACT: Amtrak's Mixed Blessings

For most businesses, the energy shortage has been a burden. For a lucky few firms in such industries as oil and nuclear power, it has been a blessing. For Amtrak, the three-year-old quasi-Government agency that operates most U.S. passenger trains, the crisis has been a little of both. Riders are cramming aboard some of the trains in prodigious numbers because they cannot get gasoline for their cars. Yet it seems that the more people Amtrak carries, the more money it loses.

System wide revenues are running as much as 40% ahead of last year's....