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May 1, 2015, 4:48 PM
- CSX jumped nearly 4% today on speculation that Bill Ackman has acquired a sizable stake in the railroad, and could reveal the stake Monday afternoon when he is scheduled to present at the Ira Sohn conference.
- Earlier this week, UBS analyst Thomas Wadewitz wrote that recent action in the stock suggests Ackman has been accumulating a position, and noted similar patterns observed with his stake in Canadian Pacific.
May 1, 2015, 2:36 PM
- U.S. regulators issue tough new rules for safer transportation of crude oil by trains, introducing a new tank car standard and mandating the use of new braking technology.
- The rules require that the oldest, least safe tank cars be replaced within three years with new cars that have thicker shells, higher safety shields and better fire protection; a later generation of tank cars, built since 2011 with more safety features, will have to be retrofitted or replaced by 2020.
- Regulators are not asking railroads to notify communities of any oil train traffic but will require a “point of contact” for information related to the routing of hazardous materials.
- Shares of tank car makers are higher: GBX +7.2%, WAB +7.4%, TRN +7.4%, ARII +7.2%, RAIL +5.7%.
- Other relevant tickers: CSX, NSC, UNP, CNI, CP, KSU, BRK.A, BRK.B
Apr. 27, 2015, 12:59 PM
- Declining output from shale oil fields has in turn cut demand for key types of railroad cars, according to new industry figures, in the latest sign of the fallout from lower crude oil prices.
- Buyers ordered 4,470 new railway tank cars during Q1, down 6% Y/Y and ~70% below the nearly 15K tank cars ordered during Q4, according to the Railway Supply Institute trade group.
- Q1 orders for covered “hopper” cars, used mostly to deliver fracking sand to drill sites, also fell to 131 cars from 11.5K a year ago and 8,627 cars during Q4.
- Tank car orders had surged with shale oil output, generally transported to refineries by rail, but output from North Dakota’s Bakken Shale field dropped in both January and February, and the U.S. Energy Department predicts continued declines in output there for April and May.
- Relevant tickers: TRN, ARII, GBX, WAB, CSX, NSC, UNP, CNI, CP, KSU, BRK.A, BRK.B
Apr. 17, 2015, 4:47 PM
- Trains carrying crude oil will be restricted to a 40 MPH speed limit in populated areas such as New York, one of the steps required by an order from the U.S. Department of Transportation in response to a series of derailments.
- The emergency order makes the agreement mandatory for all railroads hauling 20 or more tank cars linked together or 35 cars in total that are filled with oil or other flammable liquids, and applies to both older model DOT-111 tank cars and CPC-1232s the industry has been voluntarily building since 2011.
- The DoT also issued an advisory to railroads to use the latest technology to check for flaws in train wheels that can cause a crash; a broken train wheel is suspected of causing the March 5 derailment near Galena, Ill., of a BNSF Railway (BRK.A, BRK.B) train hauling 103 cars of Bakken crude.
- Other relevant tickers: CSX, UNP, NSC, KSU, GWR, CNI, CP
Apr. 14, 2015, 5:36 PM
Apr. 14, 2015, 4:14 PM
- CSX (NYSE:CSX) declares $0.18/share quarterly dividend, 12.5% increase from prior dividend of $0.16.
- Forward yield 2.17%
- Payable June 15; for shareholders of record May 29; ex-div May 27.
- Additionally, The board plans to repurchase upto $2B of common stock.
Apr. 14, 2015, 4:13 PM
- CSX (NYSE:CSX) reports it grew operating income by 14% in Q1 as growth across markets offset the impact of a strong U.S. dollar and lower fuel recoveries.
- Total merchandise volume was up 2% during the quarter to 690K units.
- Coal volume -1% to 289K units.
- Intermodal volume +1% to 655K units.
- Operating ratio +330 bps to 72.2%.
- A new $2B share repurchase program has been approved.
- Previously: CSX beats by $0.01, misses on revenue
- CSX +4.3% after hours.
Apr. 14, 2015, 4:03 PM
- CSX (NYSE:CSX): Q1 EPS of $0.45 beats by $0.01.
- Revenue of $3B (-0.3% Y/Y) misses by $20M.
- Shares +2.4% AH.
Apr. 14, 2015, 7:38 AM
- A detailed study from Cowen & Company on the railroad industry concludes this year will be one of the most difficult in years.
- Pricing pressure is at the heart of the firm's concerns.
- "Intermodal renewals have been occurring at considerably high rates, and the slight 10-bps decline in overall rail pricing in our survey suggests that non-intermodal pricing may be tempered enough to more than offset the intermodal rate strength," reads the report.
- Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC) warned on profit last night, while CSX (NYSE:CSX) reports Q1 earnings tomorrow.
- Railroad stocks: UNP, CNI, ARII, GBX, CP, KSU, WAB, TRN.
Apr. 13, 2015, 5:39 PM
Apr. 13, 2015, 5:35 PM
Apr. 6, 2015, 6:51 PM
- The exploding growth in oil train shipments fueled by the U.S. energy boom has sputtered in recent months, hurt by safety problems and low crude oil prices, WSJ reports.
- Railroads have been a major beneficiary of the U.S. energy boom, as some oil companies turned to trains to move crude to refineries from North Dakota and other areas underserved by pipelines, but WSJ says ~1.38M bbl/day of oil and fuels such as gasoline rode the rails in March vs. an average of 1.5M bbl/day in the same period a year ago.
- BNSF Railway (BRK.A, BRK.B), which is responsible for ~70% of U.S. oil train traffic, operated as many as 10 trains a day last year but now is averaging nine a day.
- Shipping oil across the U.S. by train can cost $6-$12/bbl, which makes sense only when the price of U.S. crude is significantly cheaper than oil pumped overseas; in recent weeks, the price gap between U.S. and Brent has narrowed to ~$7/bb, making some oil train shipments too costly at this time, but Barclays thinks U.S. crude may sell for $13/bbl less than Brent, which would boost oil train shipments later this year.
- Other relevant tickers: CSX, UNP, NSC, KSU, GWR, CNI, CP
Mar. 31, 2015, 2:16 PM
- MKM Partners thinks the smart move is to sell railroad stocks and buy airlines.
- Chief Market Technician Jonathan Krinsky leans on technical analysis (video) in making the transportation call.
- Avondale Partners is also out with a bearish take on railroads.
- The investment firm lowers Canadian Pacific (NYSE:CP), Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC), CSX (NYSE:CSX), Canadian National Railway (NYSE:CNI), and Union Pacific (NYSE:UNP) to Market Underperform on earnings growth concerns.
Mar. 23, 2015, 10:02 AM
- Weak guidance from Kansas City Southern is taking down some peers on fears of a drop in energy segment revenue.
- There is also concern in the sector on tighter regulations after an increase in accidents.
- Previously: Kansas City Southern lowers 2015 revenue outlook (Mar. 23 2015)
- Decliners: Union Pacific (NYSE:UNP) -2.0%, Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC) -1.1%, Genesee & Wyoming (NYSE:GWR) -1.0%, CSX (NYSE:CSX) -1.2%, Canadian Pacific (NYSE:CP) -1.4%, Canadian National Railway (NYSE:CRI) -1.0%.
Mar. 12, 2015, 8:10 AM
- Canada proposes tough new oil tank car standards and says even improved tank cars coming into service now would have to be off the rails by 2025 at the latest.
- New cars would need thicker tank car walls and an outer cover for thermal protection.
- The announcement comes after a recent series of fiery derailments in Canada and the U.S., including some that involved the newer, improved rail cars, and as more oil increasingly travels by rail due to rising production and a shortage of pipelines.
- The move signals that the U.S. may adopt similar regulations and will increase pressure on the rail car industry to produce enough new cars on a tighter deadline.
- Relevant tickers: CNI, CP, CSX, UNP, KSU, NSC, GWR, BRK.A, BRK.B, GBX, TRN, ARII, RAIL, WAB
Mar. 10, 2015, 7:25 PM
- Canada and the U.S. are "very close" to announcing stronger new oil tanker rail car standards, intended to limit fires and pollution when oil trains derail, Canadian Transport Minister Lisa Raitt says.
- A recent spate of fiery oil tanker accidents, including three derailments in just the past month from Canadian National Railway (NYSE:CNI), has ratcheted up the pressure on both governments to take action.
- Raitt is recommending that Canada's House of Commons transport committee summon CNI to explain its recent accidents.
- Meanwhile, officials from large rail operators met with White House staff last week to argue against the need for electronically controlled pneumatic brakes, saying they would be costly and not add significant safety benefits.
- Other relevant tickers: CP, CSX, UNP, KSU, NSC, GWR, BRK.A, BRK.B, GBX, TRN, ARII, RAIL, WAB
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