Wednesday, April 16, 2014

CSX 1Q earnings slip, but beat Street

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CSX Corp. announced late Tuesday, April 15, 2014 first-quarter net earnings of $398 million, or 40 cents per share, down from $462 million, or 45 cents per share, in the same quarter of 2013. But that still beat Wall Street analyst consensus estimates of 38 cents per share.

First-quarter revenue rose 2% to $3.0 billion "with strength in intermodal and merchandise markets more than offsetting declines in coal," the Jacksonville, Fla.-based Class I railroad said. But CSX's operating ratio increased 520 basis points to 75.5%, which CSX attributed "primarily" to harsh winter weather conditions.

"The company is indebted to the dedicated men and women of CSX who worked tirelessly through one of the worst winters on record to keep the network running as fluidly as possible," said Chairman, President and CEO Michael J. Ward. "Thanks to the hard work of our employees, service levels are gradually recovering, and we are capitalizing on an economy that continues to show positive momentum."

CSX expects "modest full-year earnings growth for 2014 on the strength of broad-based merchandise and intermodal gains and an improving domestic coal environment. In addition, the company remains confident in its ability to sustain double-digit earnings growth and margin expansion for its shareholders in 2015 and beyond. The company expects to sustain a mid-60s operating ratio longer-term," the railroad said.

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