Tuesday, July 17, 2012

CSX earnings rise, operating ratio falls

Written by  Luther S. Miller, Senior Consulting Editor

CSX Corp. late Tuesday announced second-quarter net earnings of $512 million, or $0.49 per share, versus $506 million, or 46 cents per share, in the same period last year—a 7% year-over-year improvement.

“CSX delivered its 10th straight quarter of year-over-year earnings growth despite significant headwinds in its utility coal business,” said Michael Ward, chairman, president, and CEO. “The company continues to perform well across a wide range of economic and market conditions.”

CSX said revenue and volume were essentially flat compared to the same period last year, as increased shipments of export coal, intermodal, and automotive products helped offset declines in utility coal.

The railroad said train crew productivity along with resource alignments made in response to changes in the mix of the business drove an increase in operating income to $943 million, leading the operating ratio to improve to 68.7% for the quarter, a 60 basis point improvement year-over-year.

“Looking forward, even with the continued headwinds in the utility coal market, CSX remains on track for earnings growth for the full-year 2012,” said the railroad. “In addition, while more challenging, the company continues to have line of sight to a 65% operating ratio by 2015.”

CSX earnings exceeded analysts' expectations.