Earnings per share easily exceeded Wall Street analyst estimates of $2.49. Revenue of $5.63 billion, up 7.2% from $5.57 billion a year ago, also exceeded estimates.
UP chief executive Jack Koraleski said the railroad saw higher overall volume for the first time in six quarters, even as coal shipments were "significantly weaker" in the latest quarter. Growth in agricultural, automotive, and industrial products , and intermodal offset coal's decline.
Koraleski also said volume growth and pricing gains helped the company post a record fourth-quarter operating ratio of 65%.
"As we look at 2014, we see signs that the economy is slowly strengthening," Koraleski said. "We're well-positioned for economic growth and are confident in our ability to deliver on our customers' growing transportation needs."