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How Canadian Pacific Railway’s Volumes Compared to Peers

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Canadian Pacific’s railcars

Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) is Canada’s second-largest freight rail. In the week ended August 26, 2017, CP’s freight volumes expanded 11.2% to over 34,000 railcars from ~31,000 railcars in the week ended August 27, 2016.

Canadian Pacific Railway reported a volume rise in all commodity groups including coal. The company’s other than coal railcars rose 11% in the 34th week of 2017 to ~27,500 units from around 25,000 units in the corresponding week last year. CNI’s coal railcars expanded 12.5% to ~6,700 units in week 34 of 2017 from ~6,000 railcars last year.

Compared with US railroads’ rise in railcar volumes, Canadian Pacific Railway scores much higher. The company’s percentage rise in railcars volumes was in tune with the growth the Canadian railroads recorded.

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Change in commodity groups

Potash, energy, chemicals, plastics, and metals, minerals, and consumer products reported a volume rise in week 34 of 2017. Commodity groups with lower year-over-year volumes were grain, fertilizer and sulfur, forest products, and automotive.

CP’s intermodal volumes

In the week ended August 26, 2017, Canadian Pacific Railway reported a 2.5% decline in intermodal traffic. In that week, CP moved ~20,000 trailers and containers compared with over 20,000 units in the week ended August 27, 2016. CP has stopped reporting separate volumes of domestic and international intermodal units.

Canadian Pacific Railway registered lower intermodal volumes percentage-wise in the 34th week of 2017, which was in sharp contrast with the gains reported by US and Canadian railroads in the same category.

ETF investment

Vanguard FTSE Developed Markets ETF (VEA) includes Canadian Pacific Railway in its portfolio. Among VEA’s top foreign holdings are BP (BP), Toyota Motors (TM), and Vodafone Group (VOD).

For ongoing updates on key US railroad stocks, please visit Market Realist’s Railroads page.

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