Posts Tagged ‘Canadian National’

CN in Canada receives strike notice from conductors

CN_red_logoTORONTO – Canadian National Railway Co said on Wednesday that the union representing roughly 3,000 of its train conductors and yard operation workers in Canada has given the company notice of its intention to strike as early as Saturday.

The strike notice comes just days after the tentative labor contract reached last year with CN, Canada’s largest rail operator, was rejected by union members.

Read the complete story at InForum.

Class I railroads release 4th quarter earnings

CSX_logoCSX Corporation announced its fourth quarter and full-year earnings for 2013 Jan. 15. The railroad reported net earnings of $426 million or $0.42 per share for the fourth quarter. These earnings were down from the same quarter in 2012, with earnings of $449 million or $0.44 per share. Earnings dropped $37 million from the third quarter of 2013.

The railroad also reported that revenue for the quarter increased by five percent to $3 billion. The increase was due to merchandise and intermodal markets.

“Supported by the strength of an expanding economy, we delivered six percent volume growth in the quarter, despite another sharp decline in coal,” said Michael J. Ward, who acts as chairman, president and chief executive officer for the company.

Annual net earnings for 2013 came in at $1.83 per share, up from 2012’s $1.79 per share. Revenue increased for the year by two percent to $12 billion, a record for the company. Operating income came in at $3.5 billion and the operating ratio increased to 71.1 percent for the year.

Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

 

ns_LogoNorfolk Southern published its fourth quarter and full-year earnings for 2013 January 22. The railroad reports a fourth quarter net income of $513 million or $1.64 per diluted share. Net income was 24 percent higher than recorded earnings for the same quarter 2012. Fourth quarter earnings were also up $31 million over third quarter earnings for the same year.

NS reported that the operating ratio improved five percent to 69.4 percent for the quarter. Operating revenues for the railroad totaled $2.9 billion, up seven percent from the same quarter last year. Income from railway operations was up 23 percent at $881 million.

For the year 2013, operating revenues for the railway reached $11.2 billion, up two percent over 2012. Income from railway operations came in at $3.3 billion for the year, four percent higher than last year. Net income rose nine percent higher than the previous year at $1.9 billion. Diluted earnings per share also saw an improvement of 12 percent at $6.04. Overall, the railway’s operating ratio improved by one percent to 71.0 percent for the year.

“Norfolk Southern’s team of safety and service-oriented employees drove our record-setting fourth quarter results through increased productivity, efficient network operations, and continued revenue gains,” Wick Moorman, NS CEO, said. “In 2014, we plan to invest $2.2 billion, a 12 percent increase over 2013, to maintain safe railway operations, purchase locomotives and freight cars, and support growth and productivity initiatives.

 

union_pacific_logoUnion Pacific announced their full-year earnings for 2013 as well as their fourth quarter earnings. The company stated that the fourth quarter of 2013 was their best quarter yet with records set.

The railroad reported a net income of $1.2 billion or $2.55 per diluted share for the fourth quarter, a 16 percent increase over last year. Last year’s results for the same quarter were only $1 billion or $2.19 per diluted share.

Operating revenue saw an increase of seven percent to more than $5.6 billion. The same quarter last year only saw an operating revenue of $5.25 billion. Operating income was up 14 percent, totaling $1.97 billion. UP’s operating ratio was a fourth quarter record at 65.0 percent.

“For the first time in six quarters, we reported overall volume growth, despite significantly weaker coal shipments,” said CEO Jack Koraleski. “The fourth quarter wrapped up another tremendous year for Union Pacific, with our overall financial performances exceeding all previous milestones.”

For 2013, UP reported a net income of $4.4 billion or $9.42 diluted share, up from 2012’s reported net income of $3.9 billion or $8.27 per diluted share. Operating revenue saw a record $21.96 billion for the railroad in 2013. Operating income also saw an increase of 10 percent, coming in at more than $7.4 billion. The 2013 operating ratio for the railroad was also a new record, coming in at 66.1 percent.

“As we look at 2014, we see signs that the economy is slowly strengthening. We’re well-positioned for economic growth and are confident in our ability to deliver on our customer’s growing transportation needs,” Koraleski said. “We’ll continue our unrelenting focus on both safety and service to our customers. We strongly believe in the power and potential of the Union Pacific franchise to drive even greater financial performance and shareholder returns in the years to come.”

 

KCS_rail_logoKansas City Southern Lines reports record fourth quarter revenues and record full-year 2013 revenues. The railroad saw an eight percent increase in revenue to $616 million over the fourth quarter of 2012.

Net income totaled $114 million or $1.03 diluted earnings per share for the quarter, a 12 percent increase over the same quarter last year. They also saw a two percent increase in carloads for the fourth quarter.

KCS’s operating income also saw an increase to $196 million for the quarter, a full 13 percent higher than 2012. Operating ratio came in at 68.1 percent for the railroad. Operating expenses also increased by six percent to $420 million for the quarter.

Full year 2013 revenue came in at a record $2.4 billion, up six percent over 2012. Carloads for the year increased two percent to 2.2 million. Operating income for the year is being reported at $739 million, an increase of 10 percent over 2012. The operating ratio for KCS was 68.8 percent for the year, a 1.1 point improvement over 2012.

“The year 2013 proved to be another very good year for Kansas City Southern,” said President and CEO David L. Starling. “2013 marks the fourth consecutive year KCS has recorded a double-digit percentage increase in its adjusted earnings per share. We expect to maintain our excellent growth momentum in 2014 and beyond.”

 

cp-logo-240Canadian Pacific Railway, Canada’s second-largest railroad, said fourth-quarter profit more than quintupled. Net income surged to C$82 million ($74 million), or 47 cents a share, from C$15 million, or 8 cents, a year earlier, and earnings per share for 2014 will rise 30 percent or more from last year, CP said. 

Since taking over in June 2012, Harrison has cut jobs and shut rail yards to bolster profit and close the operations gap with larger rival Canadian National Railway, his former employer. CP reported record operating ratio, a costs-to-revenue measure of efficiency, for the last quarter and said it expects more improvement this year. The railroad’s operating ratio improved to a record 65.9 percent in the quarter from 74.8 percent a year earlier, and the company said it’s targeting 65 percent or lower this year. 

“This was a solid quarter, with decent operating numbers,” Jason Seidl, a Cowen & Co. analyst in New York who rates the shares market perform, said in a telephone interview. “The guidance is for a minimum of 30 percent growth. This year they did much better than their original guidance, so if they do that again this year, they will be well above the consensus.” 

Canadian Pacific stock shares jumped 4.3 percent to C$165 at the close in Toronto, the biggest single-day increase since Oct. 23. The stock has gained 2.7 percent this year.

The 69-year-old Harrison, who came out of retirement to become Canadian Pacific’s CEO, insisted he still plans to lead the company for another two years before handing the reins to Chief Operating Officer Keith Creel. 

 

CN_red_logoCanadian National Railway Co. Jan. 30 said its fourth-quarter earnings increased to C$635 ($568 million), or 76 Canadian cents a share, up from C$610 million, or 71 Canadian cents, a year earlier, helped by higher petroleum product volumes and a stronger U.S. dollar. The company also boosted its quarterly cash dividend by 16 percent and reaffirmed its guidance for 2014.

The railroad, based in Montreal, was helped by strong energy markets. Revenue from the transport of petroleum and chemicals jumped 22% in the fourth quarter, while revenues from metals and minerals and forestry products also made double-digit gains. 

Revenue increased 8 percent to C$2.745 billion and operating expenses rose 5 percent to C$967 million. The company’s operating ratio rose to 64.8 percent from 63.6 percent. The operating ratio is the percentage of operating revenue consumed by operating costs, so an increase indicates a decline. 

“Key operating and service metrics remained solid, and we continued to drive incremental improvement in our broad safety record,” Chief Executive Claude Mongeau said in a statement. 

“CN sees good opportunities in 2014 in a number of markets, including intermodal, oil-and-gas-related commodities, Canadian and U.S. grain, and commodities related to the recovery in the U.S. housing market,” Mr. Mongeau said.

Class I railroads report 2nd quarter earnings

CSX_logo

CSX Corporation announced July 16 second quarter net earnings of $535 million or $0.52 per share. For the second quarter of 2012, CSX earned $512 or $0.49 per share. According to these figures, CSX is up a profit of $23 million over last year’s earnings for the same quarter.

CSX attributes these profits to overall revenue growth, service and efficiency results, and other items such as tax and real estate. Revenue for the second quarter 2013 was a total of almost $3.1 billion. CSX was at an operating income of $963 million and an operating ratio of 68.6% for the quarter.

Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

CSX is up from last quarter, having reported a net income of $459 million or $0.45 per share. Revenue for the first quarter was at $2.96 billion, quite a bit less than this quarter’s reported $3.1 billion.

 

union_pacific_logoUnion Pacific Corporation announced July 18 that performance for the second quarter 2013 was the best they have ever reported at a net income of $1.1 billion or $2.37 per diluted share, an increase of five percent over last year’s second quarter earnings. Earnings for the same quarter last year were only $1 billion or $2.10 per diluted share.

UP saw an increase of operating revenue to $5.5 billion, while last year’s operating revenue for the same quarter was only $5.2 billion. The freight revenue was also at a five percent increase and their operating ratio of 65.7 percent was the best ever recorded at 1.3 points higher than the second quarter last year; and 0.9 points better than the previous best-ever record which was set in the third quarter of 2012.

Second quarter earnings are also up from the first quarter of this year. UP reported increased revenue of $5.29 billion for the first quarter, a great deal less than this quarter’s reported $5.5 billion.

 

KCS_rail_logoKansas City Southern (KCS) reported July 19 record revenues as well as record carloads for the second quarter 2013. KCS announced that the second quarter was up six percent over the second quarter 2012 with $579 million in revenues. Carloads saw an increase of three percent over last year as well.

The railroad saw an operating income of $179 million, 12 percent higher than the same quarter of the previous year and an operating ratio of 69.0 percent, a 1.5-point improvement.

Revenue growth for the second quarter was led by a 26 percent increase in Energy, a 20 percent increase in Automotive and a 13 percent increase in Intermodal revenues over last year. Revenues from Chemicals & Petroleum and Industrial & Consumer grew by 11 percent and four percent respectively over last year’s second quarter.

KCS saw a decrease in revenues from Agriculture and Minerals, which decline by 18 percent, due to droughts and a decrease in grain volumes. 

 

CN_red_logoCanadian National Railway (CN) announced July 22 that profits are up for the second quarter 2013 over the same quarter of 2012. Net income for the second quarter was C$717 million or C$1.69 per diluted share. Net income for the same quarter last year was only C$631 million or C$1.44 per diluted share.

CN reported a net gain of C$13 million that resulted from a gain on a non-monetary transaction with another railway. Excluding this transaction, it’s reported that CN saw an increase of diluted earnings per share (EPS) of 11 percent to C$1.66 for the second quarter. The same quarter last year was at C$1.50.

Revenues saw an increase of five percent to C$2,666 million that was reportedly driven by a five percent increase in revenue ton-miles and a two percent increase in carloadings.

CN reported that operating income increased six percent to C$1,042 million with an operating ratio (defined as operating expenses as a percentage of revenue) improvement of 0.4 of a point to 60.9 percent.

“We executed strongly during the second quarter, with service and operating metrics on a steady improvement trend. This performance underscores our agenda of Operational and Service Excellence, which is key to achieve solid revenue growth at low incremental cost. … Despite slower volume growth than anticipated, the CN team will maintain a keen focus on growing revenues faster than the overall economy as well as on tightly managing costs to meet our full-year financial outlook,” said President and Chief Executive Officer Claude Mongeau. 

 

ns_LogoNorfolk Southern (NS) announced Tuesday, July 23 an 11 percent decrease in income for the second quarter 2013. Income was at $465 million for the second quarter of 2013 whereas they were at $524 million for the same quarter of 2012.

Diluted earnings per share were at $1.46, nine percent lower than they were in 2012 at $1.60 per diluted share.

The operating revenues for the railroad came in at $2.8 billion, three percent lower than in 2012. However, the operating ratio came in at 70.2 percent, which is four percent higher than the ratio reported for the second quarter of 2012.

Fuel surcharges came in at $306 million, $59 million less than last year’s reported amounts. General merchandise revenues rose to two percent to $1.6 billion. Coal revenues fell 17 percent to $626 million due to lower average revenue per unit and a four percent decline in volumes. NS reported that Intermodal revenues increased four percent to $588 million and volumes increased five percent due to continued domestic and international growth.

“In the second quarter, Norfolk Southern delivered solid results, supported by growth in our chemicals, intermodal, and automotive businesses, despite continuing weakness in the coal markets,” CEO Wick Moorman state. “We continue to focus on service efficiency and velocity, which is enabling us to control operating expenses and deliver superior performance to our customers.”

 

cp-logo-240Canadian Pacific (CP) reports record highs in operating ratio Wednesday, July 24. The operating ratio came in at 71.9 percent, a 1,060 basis-point improvement and an all-time quarterly record for the railroad.

Operating income came in at C$420 million, an increase over the second quarter of last year by 76 percent.

Total revenues for CP were C$1.5 billion, an increase of ten percent; also a quarterly record. Operating expenses were low at C$1.1 billion, a decrease of four percent. CP reported a net income of C$252 million or C$1.43 per diluted share.

The second quarter of 2012 had a net income of only C$103 million or C$0.60 per share. The second quarter of 2013 had a 138 percent improvement in year-over-year earnings per share. 

 

3d quarter rail profits wrap-up

BNSF reported a 22 percent increase in profit for the third quarter 2012 versus third quarter 2011, citing improved intermodal (trailers and containers on flat cars) and automotive traffic.

BNSF’s third quarter 2012 operating ratio of 68.3 percent was a significant improvement over the 71.7 percent for third quarter 2011. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

BNSF operates in 28 states and two Canadian provinces

 

Canadian National reported a less than one percent drop in profit for the third quarter 2012 versus third quarter 2011.

CN’s third quarter 2012 operating ratio of 60.6 percent increased from 59.3 percent from third quarter 2011. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

CN is primarily a Canadian railroad. Its U.S. holdings include what were formerly Detroit, Toledo & Ironton; Elgin, Joliet & Eastern; Grand Trunk Western; Illinois Central; and Wisconsin Central.

 

Canadian Pacific reported a 20 percent improvement in profit for the third quarter 2012 versus third quarter 2011. The railroad attributed the improvement to cost cuts, efficiency improvements and an increase in automotive traffic.

CP’s third quarter 2012 operating ratio of 74.4 was an improvement from the 75.8 percent operating ratio for third quarter 2011. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

Canadian Pacific is primarily a Canadian railroad. Its U.S. holdings include Class I Soo Line and regional railroad Delaware & Hudson.

 

CSX reported a 2 percent drop in profit for the third quarter 2012 versus third quarter 2011, citing lower overall freight volume and lower fuel-cost recovery even as export coal, automotive and intermodal shipments (trailers and containers on flat cars) showed increases.

The CSX third quarter 2012 operating ratio of 70.5 percent was virtually unchanged from the 70.4 percent for third quarter 2011. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

CSX operates some 21,000 route miles in 23 states and the District of Columbia.

 

Kansas City Southern reported a 9.8 percent drop in profit for the third quarter 2012 versus third quarter 2011, even as carloads rose and operating ratio improved. The railroad cited as the reason an almost 70 percent higher tax bill in Mexico stemming from a rise in the value of the peso against the dollar and continuing rebuilding expenses two years after Hurricane Alex damaged rail facilities south of the border. About half the railroad’s revenue flows from its operations in Mexico.

KCS’s third quarter 2012 operating ratio of 68.7 was a 2.6 percentage point improvement from third quarter 2011 and the best in company history. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

KCS operates some 3,500 route miles in 10 states in the Central and South-Central U.S., as well as Kansas City Southern de Mexico, a primary Mexican rail line.

 

Norfolk Southern reported a 27 percent decline in profit for third quarter 2012 versus third quarter 2011, citing reductions in coal and merchandise volume. The slump in coal shipments has resulted in employee furloughs.

NS’s third quarter 2012 operating ratio of 72.9 was a more than five percentage point increase over the third quarter 2011 operating ratio of 67.5. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

Norfolk Southern operates some 20,000 route miles in 22 states and the District of Columbia.

   

Union Pacific profit rose 15 percent in third quarter 2012 compared with third quarter 2011. The railroad said price increases and more automotive and chemical shipments overcame a drop in coal loadings.

Union Pacific’s third quarter 2012 operating ratio of 66.6 percent was 2.5 percentage points better than third quarter 2011, and a 0.4 percentage point improvement from the previous record set in the second quarter 2012.Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

Union Pacific operates some 32,000 route miles in 23 states in the western two-thirds of the U.S.

 

IC yardmasters have tentative pact

UTU-represented yardmasters employed by Canadian National Railway’s Illinois Central Railroad have reached a new tentative agreement following mediation assistance from the National Mediation Board. A March tentative agreement was rejected by the membership, which will now vote, through Sept. 15, on the new tentative pact.

Negotiations were led by UTU International Vice President Paul Tibbit and UTU General Chairperson Doyle Turner (GO 347).

“This tentative agreement, as with others negotiated with Class 1 railroads, is intended to bring parity in wages, benefits and work rules to the thousands of employees in the railroad industry, along with the many other protections offered by union membership,” Turner said. “The seniority, scope and discipline rules these members now enjoy are what makes union membership valuable.”

Illinois Central connects Chicago with New Orleans and Mobile, Ala., and also reaches Omaha, Neb., and Sioux City, Iowa. Canadian National gained control of Illinois Central in 1998.

OSHA reiterates zero tolerance for worker retaliation

OSHA logo; OSHAHere we go again – or should we say, again and again and again and again.

This time it is Canadian National’s Illinois Central Railroad and short line Chicago, Ft. Wayne & Eastern Railroad that have been hit with more than $650,000 in sanctions by the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration for retaliating against three employees who reported workplace injuries and/or safety concerns.

Sadly, there is basis in fact for the refrain that no industry spends as much to hire and train new employees as do railroads and then works so hard to intimidate, harass and fire them.

The Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) said the more than $650,000 in sanctions is to go toward back wages and damages for two Illinois Central employees at the railroad’s Markham, Ill., yard, and a Chicago, Ft. Wayne and Eastern employee — all of whom were the targets of management retaliation in three separate incidents.

“It is critically important that railroad employees in the Midwest and across the nation know that OSHA intends to defend the rights of workers who report injuries and safety concerns,” said Assistant Secretary of Labor Dr. David Michaels. “We will use the full force of the law to make sure that workers who are retaliated against for reporting health and safety concerns are made whole.”

Michaels has said that before, in the wake of its investigations and sanctions against other railroads – and OSHA continues to deliver on its promise.

The Federal Rail Safety Act of 1970 extended whistleblower protection to employees retaliated against for reporting an injury or illness requiring medical attention. The Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008 added additional requirements ensuring injured workers receive prompt medical attention. An employer is outright prohibited from disciplining an employee for requesting medical or first-aid treatment, or for following a physician’s orders, a physician’s treatment plan, or medical advice, or for reporting workplace safety concerns.

Retaliation, including threats of retaliation, is defined as firing or laying off, blacklisting, demoting, denying overtime or promotion, disciplining, denying benefits, failing to rehire, intimidation, reassignment affecting promotion prospects, or reducing pay or hours.

OSHA, which does not identify whistleblowers, said the first employee, a conductor, was injured in August 2008 when he was knocked unconscious and sustained injuries to his shoulder, back and head while switching railcars in Illinois Central’s Markham, Ill., yard. A knuckle that connects the cars allegedly broke, said OSHA, causing the cars to suddenly jolt and the employee to fall. The railroad held an investigative hearing and consequently terminated the conductor, alleging he had violated safety rules. 

OSHA, however, found that the worker was terminated in reprisal for reporting a work-related injury.

The second employee, a carman, reported an arm/shoulder injury in February 2008. While walking along a platform to inspect railcars in the poorly lit yard, said OSHA, the carman slipped on ice and tried to catch himself, which jolted his left arm and shoulder. The railroad held an investigative hearing and consequently terminated the carman for allegedly violating the company’s injury reporting procedures.

OSHA, however, concluded that the carman had properly reported the injury.

 In the third incident, OSHA said Chicago Fort Wayne & Eastern Railroad – a RailAmerica property — wrongly terminated a conductor in retaliation for his raising concerns about workplace safety while serving as a union officer, and for reporting a trainmaster had instructed him to operate a train in violation of certain Federal Railroad Administration rules in June 2009 near Fort Wayne, Ind.

UTU designated legal counsel have pledged to investigate and assist UTU members in bringing complaints under these laws.

A rail employee may file a whistle-blower complaint directly with OSHA, or may contact a UTU designated legal counsel, general chairperson or state legislative director for assistance.

A listing of UTU designated legal counsel is available at:

https://smart-union.org/td/designated-legal-counsel/

or may be obtained from local or general committee officers or state legislative directors.

To view a more detailed OSHA fact sheet, click on the following link:

www.osha.gov/Publications/OSHA-factsheet-whistleblower-railroad.pdf

First quarter 2012 rail profits wrap-up

BNSF reported a 15 percent increase in profit forf the first quarter 2012 versus first quarter 2011, citing improved pricing and higher fuel surcharges.

BNSF’s first quarter 2012 operating ratio of 74.4 percent was one percentage point lower than for the first quarter 2011. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

BNSF operates in 28 states and two Canadian provinces.

 

Canadian National reported a 16 percent increase in profit for the first quarter 2012 versus first quarter 2011, saying its bottom line was helped by a mild winter and improved economic conditions.

CN’s first quarter 2012 operating ratio of 66.2 percent was almost 3 percentage points better than its 69.0 operating ratio for the first quarter 2011. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

CN is primarily a Canadian railroad. Its U.S. holdings include what were formerly Detroit, Toledo & Ironton; Elgin, Joliet & Eastern; Grand Trunk Western; Illinois Central; and Wisconsin Central.

 

Canadian Pacific reported a 318 percent increase in profit for the first quarter 2012 versus first quarter 2011.

The key was a more than 10 percentage point improvement in CP’s operating ratio, which fell to 80.1 percent for the first quarter 2012 – down from 90.6 for the first quarter 2011. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

Canadian Pacific is primarily a Canadian railroad. Its U.S. holdings include Class I Soo Line and regional railroad Delaware & Hudson.

 

Even with sharply reduced coal loadings, CSX reported a 14 percent increase in profit for the first-quarter 2012 versus first-quarter 2011. CSX credited price hikes and increased shipments of automobiles, metals and intermodal (trailers and containers on flatcars) as the reason.

CSX said coal loadings for the quarter were down 14 percent, but automobile and auto-related traffic rose 18 percent.

The CSX first-quarter 2012 operating ratio of 71.1 percent was a record for the first quarter. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

CSX operates some 21,000 route miles in 23 states and the District of Columbia.

Kansas City Southern  reported a 17 percent improvement in profit for the first quarter 2012 versus first quarter 2011, with the railroad citing “robust” intermodal and automotive traffic along with “growing cross-border traffic with Mexico.”

KCS’s first quarter 2012 operating ratio of 71.2 was 2.6 percentage points improved from its operating ratio for the first quarter 2011. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

KCS operates some 3,500 route miles in 10 states in the Central and South-Central U.S., as well as Kansas City Southern de Mexico, a primary Mexican rail line.

 

Norfolk Southern reported a 26 percent improvement in profit for the first quarter 2012 versus first quarter 2011, citing pricing strength and an increase in intermodal traffic that offset a 6 percent reduction in coal traffic.

NS’s first quarter 2012 operating ratio of 73.3 was improved from the 74.9 percent operating ratio for first quarter 2011. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

Norfolk Southern operates some 20,000 route miles in 22 states and the District of Columbia.

 

Union Pacific reported a 35 percent improvement in profit for the first quarter 2012 versus first quarter 2011, with the railroad citing a 15 percent increase in shipments of automobiles and gains in the number of carloads of other industrial products that offset dampening demand for coal transport.

UP’s first quarter 2012 operating ratio of 70.5 was 4.2 percentage points better than for the first quarter 2011. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

Union Pacific operates some 32,000 route miles in 23 states in the western two-thirds of the U.S.

CN, CP, CSX, KCS, NS, UP report 2011 earnings

CANADIAN NATIONAL

Canadian National reported a 9 percent increase in profit for calendar-year 2011 versus calendar-year 2010.

The CN calendar-year operating ratio of 63.5 percent was a slight improvement over the 63.6 percent operating ratio for calendar-year 2010. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

CN said “solid operational and service performance helped CN deliver exceptional financial results.”

CN is primarily a Canadian railroad. Its U.S. holdings include what were formerly Detroit, Toledo & Ironton; Elgin, Joliet & Eastern; Grand Trunk Western; Illinois Central; and Wisconsin Central.

 

CANADIAN PACIFIC

Canadian Pacific reported a 12 percent reduction in profit for calendar-year 2011 versus calendar-year 2010.

The CP calendar-year 2011 operating ratio of 81.3 was a steep increase from the 77.6 percent calendar-year 2010 operating ratio. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

CP said, “We exited 2011 having made meaningful progress on the three pillars of our multi-year plan: driving growth, expanding network capacity to safely and efficiently support higher volumes and controlling costs.

Canadian Pacific is primarily a Canadian railroad. Its U.S. holdings include Class I Soo Line and regional railroad Delaware & Hudson.

 

CSX

Despite reductions in agricultural, chemicals, coal and intermodal shipments, CSX reported an 11 percent increase in profit for calendar-year 2011 versus calendar-year 2010.

The CSX calendar-year operating ratio of 70.9 percent was an improvement from the 71.1 percent operating ratio for calendar-year 2010. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad. For the fourth quarter 2011, the CSX operating ratio increased to 71.5 percent from 70.0 percent for the fourth-quarter 2010.

CSX Chairman Michael Ward told investors, “Our performance in 2011 has set a strong foundation for growth.”

CSX operates some 21,000 route miles in 23 states and the District of Columbia.

 

KANSAS CITY SOUTHERN

Kansas City Southern reported a 26 percent increase in profit for calendar-year 2011 versus calendar-year 2010.

The KCS calendar-year operating ratio was 70.9 percent versus 73.2 percent for calendar-year 2010. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad. For the fourth quarter 2011, the KCS operating ratio was 71.6 percent, an improvement from fourth-quarter 2010.

The railroad said 2011 was “the first time in our railroad’s 125 years we attained over $2 billion revenue and two million carloads.”

KCS operates some 3,500 route miles in 10 states in the Central and South-Central U.S., as well as Kansas City Southern de Mexico, a primary Mexican rail line.

 

NORFOLK SOUTHERN

Norfolk Southern reported a 28 percent increase in profit for calendar-year 2011 versus calendar-year 2010.

The railroad’s calendar-year 2011 operating ratio of 71.2 percent was a 1 percentage point improvement over calendar-year 2010. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

NS said said it “achieved all-time records for revenues, operating income, net income, and earnings per share during 2011, and set fourth-quarter records for revenues, net income, and earnings per share.”

Norfolk Southern operates some 20,000 route miles in 22 states and the District of Columbia.

UNION PACIFIC

Union Pacific reported an 18 percent increase in profit for calendar-year 2011 versus calendar-year 2010, citing improvements in “core pricing.”

UP’s calendar-year 2011 operating ratio of 70.7 percent was but one-tenth of one-percent off its record 70.6 percent operating ratio for 2010. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad. UP’s operating ratio of 68.3 percent was a record fourth-quarter low, and almost two percentage points improved from its 2010 fourth-quarter operating ratio.

UP said it still had 1,030 employees on furlough at year-end – down from 1,500 at year-end 2010 and well below the 4,200 on furlough at the end of 2009.

“We expect continued slow but steady economic growth in 2012,” Union Pacific CEO Jim Young said.

Union Pacific operates some 32,000 route miles in 23 states in the western two-thirds of the U.S.

BNSF, which is privately held, has not yet posted its 2011 financial results. They will be added when available.

DM&IR, DW&P merged into Wisconsin Central

Canadian National has completed the merger of Duluth, Missabe & Iron Range Railway and Duluth, Winnipeg & Pacific Railway into its Wisconsin Central subsidiary.

CN said the merger, approved by the U.S. Surface Transportation Board, will make operations more efficient and customer focused.

In October, in preparation for the merger, UTU represented conductors and brakemen employed by the three CN subsidiaries ratified an implementing agreement consolidating the three properties under a single agreement.

That new agreement provides for four stand-alone general committees under the jurisdiction of one general committee – with General Chairpersons Matt Koski (DW&P, GO 325), Steve Haus (DM&IR, GO 315) and Saint W. J. Laurent (DM&IR, GO 321) merging with General Chairperson Ken Flashberger (WC, GO 987).

“The merger reduces the administration costs associated with four general committees,” said then-UTU International Vice President John Babler, who assisted with negotiations. “The implementing agreement satisfied both New York Dock, Article 1, Section 4, merger conditions and the parties’ Railway Labor Act Section 6 notices.”

Also provided by the agreement are general wage increases, additional personal leave days, up to eight new extra board positions, a reduction in the number of years to qualify for additional weeks of vacation, a new bid rule and prior-rights zones.

Additionally, the new agreement provides terminal protection for DW&P and DM&IR trainmen, preserves no-furlough clauses on each former property, reduces call windows to four hours, guarantees consecutive days off for extra boards and pools, and establishes an order of call when the extra board is exhausted.

“General Chairpersons Flashberger, Koski, Haus and Laurent played key roles in the negotiations, each recognizing the value of a negotiated settlement, and came to the negotiations fully versed on their respective agreements,” Babler said in October. “They came prepared to make the tough choices that would best suit their members’ needs in the short-term and long-term. They also did a remarkable job holding town hall meetings to inform members about the implementing agreement,” Babler said.

UP lone “revenue adequate” railroad for 2010

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Surface Transportation Board has determined that only one major railroad – Union Pacific – was “revenue adequate” in calendar year 2010.

A railroad is considered “revenue adequate” if it achieves a rate of return on net investment equal to at least the current cost of capital for the railroad industry.

Revenue adequacy determines long-term financial sustainability – the ability to pay investors competitive returns as well as covering the cost of efficient operation, which includes obtaining capital for new equipment; to maintain existing track, bridges, signal systems and other capital assets; and to fund capacity expansion.

For 2010, the STB concluded that the current cost of capital for the railroad industry was 11.03 percent, and only Union Pacific achieved a rate of return equal to or exceeding that percentage. No railroad was found to be “revenue adequate” for calendar year 2009.

For 2010, the STB determined that Union Pacific achieved a rate of return on net investment of 11.54 percent; Norfolk Southern, 10.96 percent; CSX, 10.85 percent; Kansas City Southern, 9.77 percent; BNSF, 9.22 percent; Canadian National U.S. affiliates, 9.21 percent; and Canadian Pacific U.S. affiliates, 8.01 percent.

Wrap up: Major rails’ 3d quarter 2011 profits

BNSF reported a 9 percent improvement in profit for the third quarter 2011 versus the third quarter 2010.

The third-quarter operating ratio of 71.7 percent was slightly higher than the 70.8 percent for third-quarter 2010. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

BNSF, which is privately held by Berkshire Hathway, operates 28,000 route miles in 28 states and two Canadian provinces.

Canadian National reported a 19 percent increase in profit for the third quarter 2011 versus the third quarter 2010.

CN said a 4 percent increase in carloadings and a 9 percent increase in revenue, coupled with “rigorous cost control” drove its higher third quarter earnings.

CN’s third quarter 2011 operating ratio of 59.3 percent improved from the 60.7 percent operating ratio during the third quarter 2010. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

CN is primarily a Canadian railroad. Its U.S. holdings include what were formerly Detroit, Toledo & Ironton; Elgin, Joliet & Eastern; Grand Trunk Western; Illinois Central; and Wisconsin Central.


Canadian Pacific’s third quarter 2011 profit fell by 5 percent versus third quarter 2010.

CP’s third quarter 2011 operating ratio deteriorated to 75.8 percent, more than two percentage points higher than its 73.7 percent operating ratio for the third quarter 2010. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

Canadian Pacific is primarily a Canadian railroad. Its U.S. holdings include Class I Soo Line and regional railroad Delaware & Hudson.

CSX reported a 12 percent increase in profit for the third quarter 2011 versus the third quarter 2010, much of it the result of higher freight rates as traffic volume slowed.

The railroad said higher fuel surcharges improved its bottom line, offsetting higher costs. CSX said also that its earnings were helped by increased coal exports to China that offset a weakness in domestic coal shipments. Coal accounts for some 33 percent of CSX revenue.

CSX’s third quarter 2011 operating ratio deteriorated to 70.4 percent versus 69.1 percent for the third quarter 2010. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

CSX operates some 21,000 route miles in 23 states and the District of Columbia.


Kansas City Southern reported a 99 percent improvement in profits for the third quarter 2011 versus third quarter 2010, driven by higher freight rates and a record level of carloadings, boosted through increased production of automobiles in Mexico destined for U.S. markets.

“These achievements are all the more impressive given the operating challenges caused by prolonged flooding in the Midwest, particularly along the Missouri River,” said CEO David Starling. “The flooding resulted in the closure of a primary rail line into Kansas City from mid-June through Labor Day, which significantly disrupted grain and coal traffic.”

KCS’s operating ratio of 66.6 for the third quarter 2011 was a sharp improvement from the 73.5 percent in third quarter 2010. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

KCS operates some 3,500 route miles in 10 states in the Central and South-Central U.S., as well as Kansas City Southern de Mexico, a primary Mexican rail line.

Norfolk Southern reported a 24 percent increase in third quarter profit versus third quarter 2010, citing increased freight rates and a 23 percent boost in coal hauled for export.

The third quarter produced for NS “all-time records for income from operations and earnings per share, while also establishing third-quarter records for net income and operating ratio,” said NS CEO Wick Moorman.

The NS third quarter 2011 operating ratio of 67.5 was a third-quarter record low and 2.1 percentage points below its third-quarter 2010 operating ratio of 69.6 percent. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

NS operates some 20,000 route miles in 22 states and the District of Columbia.

Union Pacific reported a 16 percent increase in profits for the third quarter 2011 versus third quarter 2010, citing price increases and fuel surcharges in the face of a sluggish economy, weather-related difficulties in parched Texas and sharply higher fuel prices.

UP’s operating ratio of 69.1 percent for the third quarter 2011 was slightly higher than the record 68.2 percent operating ratio it posted in the third quarter 2010. Operating ratio is a railroad’s operating expenses expressed as a percentage of operating revenue, and is considered by economists to be the basic measure of carrier profitability. The lower the operating ratio, the more efficient the railroad.

Union Pacific operates some 32,000 route miles in 23 states in the western two-thirds of the U.S.

As BNSF is now privately held, it does not report its earnings.

Implementing agreement reached on 3 CN properties

Some 430 UTU represented conductors and brakemen employed by Canadian National properties Wisconsin Central; Duluth, Winnipeg & Pacific  (DW&P); and Duluth Missabe and Iron Range (DM&IR) have ratified an implementing agreement — effective Jan. 1 — consolidating the three properties under a single agreement.

The new agreement provides for four stand-alone general committees under the jurisdiction of one general committee – with General Chairpersons Matt Koski (DW&P, GO 325), Steve Haus (DM&IR, GO 315) and Saint W. J. Laurent (DM&IR, GO 321) merging with General Chairperson Ken Flashberger (WC, GO 987).

“The merger reduces the administration costs associated with four general committees,” said UTU International Vice President John Babler, who assisted with negotiations. “The implementing agreement satisfied both New York Dock, Article 1, Section 4, merger conditions and the parties’ Railway Labor Act Section 6 notices.”

Also provided by the agreement are general wage increases, additional personal leave days, up to eight new extra board positions, a reduction in the number of years to qualify for additional weeks of vacation, a new bid rule and prior-rights zones.

Additionally, the new agreement provides terminal protection for DW&P and DM&IR trainmen, preserves no-furlough clauses on each former property, reduces call windows to four hours, guarantees consecutive days off for extra boards and pools, and establishes an order of call when the extra board is exhausted.

“General Chairpersons Flashberger, Koski, Haus and Laurent played key roles in the negotiations, each recognizing the value of a negotiated settlement, and came to the negotiations fully versed on their respective agreements,” Babler said. “They came prepared to make the tough choices that would best suit their members’ needs in the short-term and long-term. The also did a remarkable job holding town hall meetings to inform members about the implementing agreement,” Babler said.