Norfolk Southern’s profits up 57% in first quarter
Norfolk Southern Corp., parent of Norfolk Southern Railway Co., Wednesday reported a 57 percent jump to its first quarter net income to $305 million. Norfolk Southern net income in the first quarter 2005 was $194 million.
Income from railway operations was $551 million, a 37 percent increase compared to $403 million in the year-earlier period. Railway operating revenues reached a record quarterly figure of $2.30 billion, a 17 percent increase from $1.96 billion in the first quarter 2005.
General merchandise revenues were up 18 percent to a record $1.28 billion, with each of Norfolk Southern’s major business groups showing improvement. Agricultural product revenues increased by 38 percent, metals and construction by 25 percent, paper, clay and forest products by 14 percent, chemical products by 11 percent and automotive by 4 percent.
Coal revenues climbed 20 percent to $559 million, and intermodal revenues were a first-quarter record of $466 million, a 14 percent rise compared to a year ago.
“Continued strong demand for rail service allowed us to produce a substantial improvement over the prior year. From our vantage point, demand for rail transportation remains healthy, and our first-quarter results reflect solid execution throughout the enterprise,” said Wick Moorman, Norfolk Southern’s chief executive officer.
Norfolk Southern’s share price on the New York Stock Exchange closed Wednesday at $55.38, up 2.08 percent, or $1.13, over the previous day’s closing price.
The railway and its subsidiaries operate about 21,200 route miles in 22 states, the District of Columbia and Ontario, Canada, serving every major container port in the eastern United States and providing connections to western rail carriers.