Canada's second largest railroad operator Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. (CP: Quote, CP.TO) on Wednesday reported a 53 percent surge in profit for the first quarter on higher freight revenues. Both revenue and earnings per share for the quarter beat analysts' estimates.
Hunter Harrison, Chief Executive Officer of Canadian Pacific said, "CP delivered the best first quarter results in its history despite challenging winter conditions. This is a true testament to the determination and perseverance of our outstanding team of railroaders."
Revenues from freight services rose 9 percent to C$1.46 billion, while other revenues were flat with the year-ago period at C$38 million.
Canadian Pacific's total revenue ton-miles or RTMs for the first quarter rose 10 percent from the prior-year period to 36.16 billion, while total freight revenue per RTM declined 1 percent from last year to 4.04 cents.
Total carloads for the quarter rose 3 percent from the year-ago quarter to 659,000, and total freight revenue per carload grew 8 percent to C$2,214.
Canadian Pacific's net income for the first quarter was C$217 million or C$1.24 per share, up from C$142 million or C$0.82 per share in the year-ago period. On average, twenty analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected the company to report earnings of C$1.21 per share for the quarter. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.
Operating expenses for the quarter increased 3 percent from last year to C$1.13 billion.
Total revenue for the quarter grew 9 percent to C$1.50 billion from C$1.38 billion in the prior-year quarter. Analysts had a consensus revenue estimate of C$1.49 billion.
Looking ahead, Harrison said, "With a very strong start to the year and momentum quickly building, I am now even more confident that we are on pace toward the best year-end financial and operating performance in CP's history."
In Wednesday's regular session on the Toronto stock exchange, CP.TO is trading at C$127.07, up C$0.84 or 0.67 percent on a volume of 93,460 shares.
by RTT Staff Writer
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