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            september 17, 2019

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Canadian National quarterly profit up 19pc to US$1.06 billion


Canadian National Railway (CN) reported that fourth quarter operating profit swelled by 19 per cent to C$1.4 billion (US$1.06 billion) on revenue of C$3.8 billion, up 16 per cent year on year, according to Shipping Gazette.
Greater volumes of crude oil and Canadian grain, rate hikes, higher fuel surcharges and the positive translation impact of a weaker Canadian dollar - partly offset by lower frac sand loads--helped drive up revenue in the quarter.
Fourth-quarter carloads increased by five per cent to 1.5 million units, while petroleum and chemicals revenue soared by 50 per cent, coal revenue jumped 21 per cent, grain and fertilisers revenue grew 13 per cent, intermodal revenue rose nine per cent, forest products revenue increased seven per cent, and metals-minerals and automotive revenue each went up five per cent.
"I'm very pleased with our fourth quarter results and the strong finish to 2018," said CN chief executive officer JJ Ruest. "With C$1.3 billion of revenue growth in the final three quarters of the year, CN regained its position of strength and demonstrated again its ability to grow at low incremental cost."
For the full year, CN reported revenue of C$14.3 billion, up 10 per cent, and operating income of C$5.5 billion, up five per cent compared with 2017 levels. Carloads rose four per cent to six million units and operating expenses climbed 13 per cent to C$8.8 billion.
For Mr Ruest, 2019 will be a year of building on the momentum the class I railway operator generated late last year. CN plans to invest a record C$3.9 billion in network improvements this year.
The budget will cover 80 miles of additional double track in western Canada and the acquisition of 140 new locomotives and 500 new grain hoppers.

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