FINANCIAL EDGE, RAILWAY AGE MARCH 2020 ISSUE: In its 4Q2019 earnings call, Union Pacific announced a decline in revenue and the laying off of 3,000 employees (layoffs as opposed to furlough). Freight revenue declined 10%; operating revenue declined 5%. Operating expenses declined 12%, thereby decreasing (improving) the operating ratio (OR) to 59.7%. Additionally, UP indicated that the reduction in workforce would bring the total number of employees to roughly 35,000, from roughly 42,000 in 2018.
Author: David Nahass
FINANCIAL EDGE, RAILWAY AGE FEBRUARY 2020 ISSUE: The 2015 FAST Act is notable to most consumers of rail assets as being the legislation that established the tank car regulations and time frames for moving the tank railcar design from the DOT-111 (legacy or CPC1232 specification) to the DOT-117J (and 117R) design.
Arthur Edward Lewis, Jr., 69, of Lancaster, Ohio, died at his residence on Friday, Jan. 10, 2020. Lewis was a rail industry icon who started his career at the Penn Central, followed by Conrail.
FINANCIAL EDGE, RAILWAY AGE DECEMBER 2019 ISSUE: When an investor buys rail equipment to lease it to a customer (lessee), generally there are terms and conditions that govern the use and maintenance of that equipment during the term of the loan or lease. Specifically, in leasing, the investor in the equipment (the lessor) makes a forward bet on the future value of the equipment.
FINANCIAL EDGE, RAILWAY AGE NOVEMBER 2019 ISSUE: Recently, three events impacting the railroad community—shippers and carriers and regulators—rushed through the news wire:
FINANCIAL EDGE, RAILWAY AGE SEPTEMBER 2019 ISSUE: On Aug. 14, the ESPN show ¿Highly Questionable? showed a video clip of a skateboarder sliding underneath a moving passenger locomotive, riding the rail on the skateboard and then sliding back out from underneath the train before the second wheelset (1). (The clip can be seen starting at about 16:30 into the video.) The hosts were suitably shocked and aghast over the audacity of the act of sliding underneath a locomotive and unsurprisingly thoughtless about the carelessness of the rider.
FINANCIAL EDGE, AUGUST 2019: With a 100-plus-degree F temperature and/or heat index blanket covering half the U.S., the summer doldrums are fully upon us. The time of year lines up with the anniversary of one of the most horrible rail tragedies in recent memory—the Lac-Mégantic derailment in July 2013. The 47 deaths that occurred as a result of that accident are unrecoverable losses for families and communities. Their memory should always serve as a reminder of the importance of safety and the need for best practices throughout the railroad industry.
FINANCIAL EDGE, JULY 2019: The longstanding and well-regarded Editor-in-Chief of Railway Age, William C. Vantuono, recently had the dubious honor of rescuing the Leasing and Equipment Finance panel at the Rail Insights Conference, held last month at the Union League Club of Chicago.
THE FINANCIAL EDGE, MAY 2019 – In a recent TED talk, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey suggested that, in an attempt to combat abusive speech and harassment, Twitter would consider moving from threads written by individuals to topic threads. Dorsey suggested these interest networks would be easier to monitor for Twitter code of conduct breeches.
If you missed this year’s Rail Equipment Finance Conference held in La Quinta, Calif., you may have missed the best rail equipment and finance program ever assembled in one location. Never fear, here is the “Financial Edge” annual summary of key takeaways from the speakers gracing the podium at REF 2019.