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CN yesterday reported better-than-expected profit for the second quarter, partly due to cost cutting and improved fuel costs.The Class I's second-quarter net income increased to $886 million, or $1.10 per share, from $847 million, or $1.03 per share, in the year-ago quarter. All figures are reported in Canadian dollars.Adjusted earnings per share came in at $1.15, up 12 percent compared with the previous year’s quarter, which beat analysts’ earnings expectations of $1.05 per share.Second-quarter operating income jumped 8 percent to $1.362 million; revenue remained flat at $3.125 million; carloadings fell by 3 percent to 1.4 million units; and revenue ton-miles declined 7 percent.CN's operating ratio for the quarter improved by 3.2 points to 56.4, compared with 59.6 in second-quarter 2014.CN President and Chief Executive Officer Claude Mongeau said the company's "solid" results for the second quarter were "driven by the team's swift action to recalibrate resources and double-down on efficiency, while continuing to improve customer service."The company reaffirmed its outlook for double-digit adjusted earnings per share growth for the year, compared with 2014’s adjusted diluted earnings per share of $3.76, “despite volume growth that remains constrained by weakness in several markets, as well as challenging year-over-year comparables,” Mongeau said in a press release.Although CN reports its earnings in Canadian dollars, a large portion of its revenues and expenses is denominated in U.S. dollars. The fluctuation of the Canadian dollar relative to the U.S. dollar affects the conversion of the company's U.S.-dollar-denominated revenues and expenses, company officials said.By commodity group, revenue for the quarter increased 17 percent for automotive, 8 percent for forest products, 4 percent for petroleum and chemicals, and 2 percent for intermodal. Second-quarter revenue declined 5 percent for metals and minerals, 7 percent for grain and fertilizers, and 26 percent for coal.
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