Earnings Preview: CSX Reports Q4 Results Monday

| About: CSX Corporation (CSX)

CSX Corporation (NYSE:CSX) is scheduled to release last fiscal quarter's results after the closing bell on January 23, 2012. Let's take a look at how CSX has done in recent quarters.

CSX Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, provides rail-based transportation services. The company offers traditional rail service, and the transport of intermodal containers and trailers. The company was founded in 1978 and is based in Jacksonville, Florida. CSX trades an average of 8.2 million shares per day.

52 Week High: $27.06

52 Week Low: $17.69

Book Value: $7.86

Float Short: 0.85%

Analysts are expecting an improvement of $0.01 in earnings per share compared to last quarter's results of $0.43. Investors will be looking to see a number north of $0.44 per share, based on the earnings estimates.Analyst estimates range between $0.42 and $0.47 per share.

The current trailing twelve months P/E ratio is 14.1. The forward P/E ratio is 11.91. The stock recently broke through the all important 200-day moving average. While the price retraced back under it appears today's break above again signals the train is moving higher. The 200 day moving average is trending lower, but the shorter term moving averages have bottomed and are now moving higher. Given the PE ratio makes CSX dirt cheap in my opinion even a miss is unlikely to hurt much. I don't think a miss is inside the current load and I am expecting a small beat of the mean estimate. A second break higher of the 200 moving average would be very bullish technically.

Investors have been rewarded with an increase of year-over-year revenue. Revenue reported was $10.64 billion for 2010 vs. $9.04 billion for 2009. The bottom line has rising earnings year-over-year of $1.56 billion for 2010 vs. $1.14 billion for 2009.The company's earnings before interest and taxes are rising with an EBIT year-over-year of $3.07 billion for 2010 vs. $2.27 billion for 2009. Rising revenue along with rising earnings is a very good sign, and what we want to see with our companies. Be sure to check the margins after the release to make sure that the bottom line is keeping up with the top line.

Here is a look at the fiscal year revenue:

paid2trade.com revenue gross bar chart for CSX

Gross reported revenue compared to the mean estimate (rounded):

Fiscal Quarter Ending Month-Year Revenue Estimates Actual $ Difference Difference %
Sep-11 $ 2.95 B $ 2.96 B $ 13.38 M 0.45%
Jun-11 $ 2.98 B $ 3.02 B $ 41.32 M 1.39%
Mar-11 $ 2.74 B $ 2.81 B $ 71.18 M 2.6%
Dec-10 $ 2.67 B $ 2.82 B $ 149.36 M 5.6%
Sep-10 $ 2.66 B $ 2.67 B $ 8.46 M 0.32%

M = millions, B = billions.

Differences are rounded.

Some onetime items are often excluded in reported EPS.

paid2trade.com Quarterly Estimates And Actual EPS results CSX Reported earnings per share compared to the mean estimate. Differences are rounded.

The total short interest number of shares for CSX:

paid2trade.com short interest tool. The total short interest number of shares for CSX

The number of days to cover short interest based on average daily trading volume for CSX:

paid2trade.com number of days to cover short interest based on average daily trading volume for CSX

I use a proprietary blend of technical analysis, financial crowd behavior, and fundamentals in my short-term trades, and while not totally the same in longer swing trades to investments, the concepts used are similar. You may want to use this article as a starting point of your own research with your financial planner. I use Seeking Alpha, Edgar Online, and Yahoo Finance for most of my data. I use the confirmed symbols from earnings.com that I believe to be of the most interest.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, but may initiate a long position in CSX over the next 72 hours.