Fri, Apr. 17, 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
Tue, Apr. 14, 5:36 PM
Tue, Apr. 14, 4:14 PM
Tue, Apr. 14, 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.
Tue, Apr. 14, 4:03 PM
Tue, Apr. 14, 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.
Mon, Apr. 13, 5:39 PM
Mon, Apr. 13, 5:35 PM
Mon, Apr. 6, 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
Tue, Mar. 31, 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.
Mon, Mar. 23, 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%.
Thu, Mar. 12, 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
Tue, Mar. 10, 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
Wed, Mar. 4, 12:57 PM
- CSX (CSX -0.3%) says it expects its domestic coal shipments will decline at least 5% this year, though it still expects to record strong Q1 earnings growth and double-digit earnings growth for 2015.
- Coal shipments are a major part of the business of railroad operators; for CSX, coal represented ~18% of the company's total freight volume and ~22% of its revenue for 2014.
- CSX also sees more moderate growth in shipments of crude oil than expected previously; crude shipments are a smaller portion of rail shipments - less than 2% at CSX - but have been one of the fastest growing parts of the rail industry.
- CSX estimates that last month's crude oil train derailment in West Virginia will knock a penny or two off Q1 EPS; it also estimates overall freight volume will increase 3% for the quarter.
Mon, Mar. 2, 7:35 PM
- The crude oil aboard the train that derailed and exploded two weeks ago in West Virginia contained so much combustible gas that it would have been barred from rail transport under safety regulations set to go into effect next month, WSJ reports.
- The oil’s vapor pressure was 13.9 psi, which exceeds the limit of 13.7 psi that North Dakota is set to impose in April on oil moving by truck or rail from the Bakken Shale.
- Plains All American Pipeline (NYSE:PAA), which shipped the oil, says it follows regulations governing the shipping and testing of crude; CSX, the railroad that carried the oil, says it had stepped up its inspections of the track along the route.
- The new information about the West Virginia accident likely will increase regulators’ focus on the makeup of oil being shipped by train; oil from sahle formations is known to contain far more combustible gas than traditional crude oil, which has a vapor pressure of ~6 psi.
- Top Bakken producers: CLR, EOG, WLL, HES, XOM, OAS, NOG, EOX, MRO
Mon, Feb. 23, 5:57 PM
- The Canadian National Railway (NYSE:CNI) train that recently derailed in Ontario, igniting and spilling more than 6K barrels of oil, was traveling at a restricted speed and carrying oil in structurally enhanced tank cars, Canadian investigators say.
- The initial findings suggest strong similarities to a CSX oil train derailment that occurred days later in West Virginia, and likely will add to concerns that recent regulatory steps to make the transport of oil by rail do not go far enough.
- Both trains derailed while traveling well below speed limits recently imposed on trains carrying crude oil, and both were pulling CPC-1232 tanker cars introduced in 2011 to be a safer replacement for an older generation that had been criticized as inadequate.
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