Kansas City Southern’s (KSU - Free Report) fourth-quarter 2018 earnings (excluding 3 cents from non-recurring items) of $1.56 met the Zacks Consensus Estimate. The bottom line, however, rose 13% on a year-over-year basis.
The company delivered revenues of $694 million, marginally beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $691.9 million. However, the top line improved 5.1% on a year-over-year basis. Overall carload volumes remained flat year over year.
In the reported quarter, adjusted operating income increased 4% to $248 million. Kansas City Southern’s operating ratio (operating expenses as a percentage of revenues) deteriorated to 64.3% compared with 64% a year ago due to 6% rise in operating expenses. The company aims at an operating ratio of 60-61% by 2021.
The Chemical & Petroleum segment generated revenues of $164 million, up 19% year over year. Volumes expanded 16% year over year. Revenues per carload also climbed 3% from the prior-year quarter.
The Industrial & Consumer Products segment generated revenues of $139.5 million, down 5% year over year. Dismal performances across all segmental units hurt results. While business volumes contracted 9%, revenues per carload increased 4% year over year.
The Agriculture & Minerals segment’s total revenues were $131.7 million, up 8% year over year. While business volumes inched up 3%, revenues per carload were up 5%, both on a year-over-year basis.
The Energy segment generated revenues of $65.3 million, down 6% year over year. Disappointing performances at the Utility Coal and Frac Sand units hampered the segment’s results. While business volumes declined 14% year over year, revenues per carload augmented 9%.
Intermodal revenues were $98.2 million, up 1% year over year. While business volumes ascended 4%, revenues per carload dipped 3% in the quarter under review.
Revenues at the Automotive segment came in at $59.9 million, down 1% year over year. While business volumes slid 5%, revenues per carload increased 4%, both on a year-over-year basis.
Other revenues totaled $35.4 million, up 36% year over year.
Kansas City Southern carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Investors interested in the broader Transportation sector are keenly awaiting fourth-quarter earnings reports from key players, namely American Airlines (AAL - Free Report) , Norfolk Southern Corp. (NSC - Free Report) and Southwest Airlines (LUV - Free Report) . Each of the companies will report final-quarter results on Jan 24.
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