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Rail News: Kansas City Southern

KCS set revenue, carload records in 3Q


Today, Kansas City Southern reported record third-quarter revenue of $622 million, which increased 8 percent compared with third-quarter 2012 primarily because the Class I registered gains in all six of its business units.

Intermodal revenue jumped 17 percent to $256.8 million; industrial and consumer products revenue rose 7 percent to $85.8 million; energy revenue increased 6 percent to $84 million, with frac sand and crude oil revenue up 7.9 percent and 3 percent, respectively; agricultural and minerals revenue climbed 7 percent to $53.1 million; automotive revenue rose 7 percent to $28 million; and chemical and petroleum revenue ratcheted up 3 percent to $62.2 million. Total volume increased 3 percent to a record 569,900 units.

"The fact that KCS delivered revenue growth in all of its business units speaks to the strength and diversity of this franchise. In addition to the many exciting growth opportunities that we see on the horizon from intermodal, auto and energy, KCS' core carload franchise continues to deliver solid revenue performance and contribute to our overall growth in earnings," said President and Chief Executive Officer David Starling in a press release. "In addition to continued strength in cross-border intermodal, cross-border revenue also benefited from strength in steel shipments and an early rebound in export grain."

KCS also reported adjusted diluted earnings per share of $1.10, up 16 percent; operating income of $200 million, up 11 percent; net income of $119 million, up 31 percent; and an operating ratio of 67.8, a 0.9-point improvement compared with third-quarter 2012 results. Operating expenses rose 6 percent to $421 million primarily because of higher compensation and benefits, fuel and purchased services costs.

"This performance demonstrates KCS' ability to absorb the impacts of a challenging economic environment while consistently delivering strong top-line and bottom-line results," said Starling.

Looking ahead, KCS expects a strong finish to the year, helped in part by growth in export grain shipments.

"We also look forward to long-term improvement in our operating ratio as we move forward with our plan to increase the percentage of equipment we own versus lease," said Starling.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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