Earnings per share beat Wall Street analyst expectations by three cents, while revenue of $3 billion also exceeded Wall Street expectations of $2.95 billion.
CSX’s operating ratio for the quarter was 71.5%.
"CSX posted historically high financial results as it continued to effectively manage ongoing challenges in the coal market and leverage growth opportunities in merchandise and intermodal," said Michael J. Ward, chairman, president and chief executive officer. "The third quarter performance is an ongoing reflection of the company's ability to capitalize on the modest improvement in the economy with a relentless focus on customer service and asset efficiency."
Higher volume and pricing gains in merchandise and intermodal helped offset anticipated declines in coal revenue.
CSX said it now expects full-year 2013 earnings per share to be slightly up from 2012 levels. In addition, the company said it remains on target to achieve its goal of sustaining a high-60s operating ratio by 2015, while remaining focused on attaining a mid-60s operating ratio longer-term.