The Railway Express Agency, Inc. (July 1918 - November 1975) was a corporation in the United States that served as a nationwide package delivery service. Founded as the American Railway Express Agency, the company was created during World War I after an effort to guarantee fast and safe transportation of money, parcels, and other good forced the consolidation of existing companies. The Railway Express Agency (REA) was formed in March 1929 from the American Railway Express Agency. Eighty-six different railroads owned REA in proportion to the amount of express traffic that passed over their lines. Express operations remained profitable until the 1950s thanks in large part to rate increases. After 1940, REA focused on express refrigerator service and expanded its fleet of refrigerator carriers until the mid-1950s. However, federal investment in the interstate highway system and the proliferation of privately-owned automobiles doomed both freight and passenger rail service. The company's name changed to REA Express, Inc. in 1960. REA was sold to five of its corporate officers in 1969 after recording several years of losses. At that point, REA constituted less than ten percent of all intercity parcel traffic and only ten percent of its business was transported by rail. REA Express filed for bankruptcy in November 1975.