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Rail News: Financials

Genesee & Wyoming registers more revenue and income, sets earnings record

Today, Genesee & Wyoming Inc. (GWI) reported fourth-quarter total operating revenue of $210.4 million and same-railroad revenue of $117.8 million, up 24 percent and 10.4 percent, respectively, compared with fourth-quarter 2010 totals.

The company’s non-freight revenue increased 3.3 percent to $65.1 million, operating income nearly doubled to $45.4 million, traffic rose 9.7 percent to 246,794 carloads and operating ratio dropped 7.5 points to 78.4. The adjusted operating ratio inched up 0.4 points to 78.6 and operating expenses climbed 13 percent to $165 million.

However, despite the revenue and income gains, and a fourth-quarter record 77 cents in diluted earnings per share, “our operating results in both North America and Australia were lower than our expectations,” said GWI President and Chief Executive Officer Jack Hellmann in a prepared statement. “In North America, our results were affected by the extended outage of a transmission line to a major power plant, a lag in diesel fuel cost recovery and higher transportation expense. In Australia, our fourth-quarter results were affected by the derailment resulting from the washout of a mainline bridge over the Edith River by Cyclone Grant on Dec. 27, as well as higher operating expense in the Adelaide-to-Darwin corridor.”

For the full year, GWI reported record revenue of $829 million, up 32 percent, and record adjusted operating income of $191 million, up 35 percent compared with 2010. Net income soared 47 percent to $119.5 million, diluted earnings per share jumped 44 percent to $2.79 and the operating ratio declined 2.4 points to 76.9, while the adjusted operating ratio set a record at 77. Operating expenses rose 27 percent to $637.3 million.

"Looking ahead, we anticipate that our business will build over the course of 2012. During the first quarter, we expect our Australian operations to continue to be negatively impacted by the Edith River bridge closure until its scheduled reopening in mid-February and our North American operations to be adversely affected by lower steam coal shipments in the U.S. due to warm winter weather,” said Hellmann. “Offsetting these items, we expect favorable 2012 contributions from the newly acquired Arizona Eastern Railway, the final delivery of new high-horsepower locomotives for our Australian intermodal service in the second quarter, as well as the start-up of a new Australian iron ore contract in the fourth quarter.”

GWI owns and operates 65 regionals and short lines in the United States, Australia, Canada, Netherlands and Belgium. The company also provides rail-car switching services and operates the Tarcoola-to-Darwin rail line, which links the Port of Darwin with the Australian interstate rail network in South Australia.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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