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Leading freight railroad carrier, Norfolk Southern Corporation (NSC - Analyst Report) announced that its Pier 6 coal uploading facility at Lamberts Point uploaded record coal into a single cargo ship. As the company observes the 50th anniversary of its Pier 6 coal transloading facility, it loaded 166,840 net tons of metallurgical coal into M/V China Pioneer for shipping to Liuzhou Iron and Steel in China.

NorfolkSouthern began operations at Lamberts Point in 1884 with the opening of the Pier 1 transloading facility. Thereon, the company kept improving its services at Lamberts Point and began several transloading terminals including Pier 6.  

NorfolkSouthern constructed Pier 6 in Jul 1963 primarily for the shipment of steel and metallurgical coal from the central Appalachian coal fields. This facility continues to remain Northern Hemisphere’s largest and fastest coal transloading facility dominating the majority of coal shipping business in the U.S.

We find Norfolk Southern’slong-term fundamentals and growth prospects appealing due to its continued investments in key projects and new businesses. Management expects 2013 capital expenditure of approximately $2.0 billion, of which approximately over $831 million will be dedicated to roadway spending.

The company expects approximately $84.0 million investment in intermodal infrastructure to improve traffic, capacity and train velocity. Investments in facilities and terminals will involve $203.0 million. The rest of the spending will be aimed at new business opportunities alongside expansion, maintenance of locomotive servicing facility and purchase of new locomotives. We appreciate the company’s plans to invest in technology upgrades that will not only lead to service improvements and efficiency but will also trim operating expenses.

Norfolk, which operates with the likes of  Union Pacific Corporation (UNP - Analyst Report), CSX Corp. (CSX - Analyst Report) and Kansas City Southern (KSU - Analyst Report) carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

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