CSX Corporation (NASDAQ:CSX) late Wednesday posted better than expected first quarter earnings results, as higher revenues and cost cuts bolstered its top and bottom line.
The Jacksonville, FL-based railroad operator reported Q1 earnings per share (EPS) of $0.51, which was $0.08 better than the Wall Street consensus estimate of $0.43.
Revenues rose 9.6% from last year to $2.87 billion, also topping analysts’ view for $2.76 billion. CSX said the revenue gains were driven by volume growth across most of the markets it services, better pricing, increased fuel recovery, and a favorable shipping mix.
Rail volumes in Q1 gained 3% overall, with Merchandise up 4%, Coal up 3%, and Intermodal rising 1%. Meanwhile, pricing jumped 7%.
CSX noted it continues to look to cut costs wherever it can, improve asset utilization, and achieve greater operations efficiency. The company commented via press release:
“I am pleased to join the CSX team and working together we are going to make this company the best North American railroad, capable of consistently meeting and exceeding the expectations of our customers and our shareholders,” said E. Hunter Harrison, president and chief executive officer. “As the business environment continues to improve and we implement Precision Scheduled Railroading, CSX will realize these objectives while driving volume growth and achieving a new level of financial performance.”
CSX Corporation shares rose $1.32 (+2.81%) to $48.25 in after-hours trading Wednesday. Year-to-date, CSX had gained 31.11% prior to today’s report, versus a 4.91% rise in the benchmark S&P 500 index during the same period.