Canadian National Reports Record Revenue, Strong 3Q Results

Candian National
Canadian National Railway

Canadian National Railway on Oct. 23 reported a third-quarter record for revenue, posting a 14% increase to C$3.68 billion.

The Montreal-based freight railroad said it had net income of $1.13 billion, or $1.54 per share, an increase of 21% from the same quarter in 2017.

Revenue ton miles were up 4%, and carloadings — the amount of freight loaded into freight cars during a specific time — were up 3%.

Operating ratio improved to 59.5 from 62.8 in the quarter. Operating ratio, or operating expenses as a percentage of revenue, is a key industry metric used to measure efficiency. The lower the ratio, the greater the company’s ability to generate profit.

“We continue to see strong opportunities ahead, across multiple existing rail commodities and new supply chain services,” CEO JJ Ruest said.

The company has undertaken 27 capacity expansion plans on its rail network across the United States and Canada and 22 have been completed in the past year, according to Canadian National.

“Our dedicated engineering team delivered, putting more than 80% of our infrastructure expansion projects fully in service at a time when the network was under heavy traffic,” Ruest said. “Our 2018 resource investments are substantially advanced, giving our railroaders the tools they need to provide industry-leading services to all of our customers now and for the long haul.”

Canadian National said revenue increased in all of its transportation sectors. The revenue increase was 25% in petroleum and chemicals and coal. Grains and fertilizers, along with forest products, metals and minerals, all saw increases of 15%. Intermodal transportation was up 8%. Revenue for automotive was up 3%, and other divisions had a 10% increase.