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Rail News Home Union Pacific Railroad


Rail News: Union Pacific Railroad

UP posts 9 percent increase in net income, record Q1 EPS


Union Pacific Corp. today announced first-quarter net income rose 9 percent to nearly $1.1 billion, or $1.32 per diluted share, compared with $1 billion, or $1.16 per diluted share in first-quarter 2016.

The $1.32 earnings per share (EPS) was a first-quarter record, UP officials said in a press release.

Revenue grew 6 percent to $5.13 billion compared with $4.83 billion in Q1 2016.

The Class I's operating income rose 6 percent to $1.8 billion, while the operating ratio remained flat at 65.1 percent compared with the same period a year ago. Higher fuel prices had a negative impact on the operating ratio by about 1.3 points, UP officials said.

"This is a very solid start to the year, especially given the weather challenges we encountered on the western part of our network earlier in the quarter," said Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Lance Fritz.

"In keeping with our strategic value tracks, our engaged employees worked safely and productively under very difficult circumstances during the quarter," he said. "As a result, operations were restored quickly as we continued to focus on providing an excellent customer experience."

Total volumes rose 2 percent, led by a 16 percent growth in coal traffic compared with last year, UP officials said.

Volume increases in coal, agricultural products and industrial products combined to more than offset declines in chemicals and automotive. Intermodal volume remained flat in the quarter compared with a year ago, as increases in international intermodal offset declines in domestic shipments.

Freight revenue during the quarter grew 6 percent, as a result of volume growth, higher fuel surcharge revenue, core pricing gains and positive mix, UP officials said. By category, coal revenue grew 25 percent; industrial products, 9 percent; agricultural products, 7 percent; intermodal, 3 percent; and chemicals, 1 percent. Automotive revenue declined 1 percent.

"With a solid first quarter performance behind us, we will continue to press ahead with our volume, pricing, and productivity initiatives through the remainder of the year," Fritz said. "Our six-track value strategy will keep us intensely focused on effectively leveraging volume growth, while providing our customers an excellent experience and our shareholders a solid return on investment."