Canadian Pacific: Intermodal Volumes Boosted Its Rail Traffic


Jun. 24 2019, Updated 10:52 a.m. ET

Rail traffic

Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) reported a YoY (year-over-year) improvement in its overall rail traffic in Week 24, which ended on June 15. The company hauled 54,099 railcars, containers, and trailers in the week—up 0.8% from the 53,647 units carried in Week 24 of 2018. The other six Class I railroad companies reported YoY declines in their freight rail traffic during the week. Union Pacific’s (UNP) rail traffic fell the most at 6%.

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Higher intermodal volumes mainly drove the YoY increase in Canadian Pacific Railway’s overall rail traffic. The company’s intermodal traffic rose 5.8% YoY in Week 24 to 20,662 containers and trailers from 19,524 units. During the week, Canadian Pacific Railway was the only company among the seven Class I railroad companies that recorded intermodal volume growth. CSX (CSX) registered the highest intermodal volume decline of 11.5%.

Carload traffic fell

Canadian Pacific Railway’s carload traffic fell 2% YoY to 33,437 railcars from 34,123 railcars in Week 24 of 2018. The company’s carload traffic, excluding coal and coke, fell 4% YoY to 27,320 wagons from 28,470 railcars. However, the company’s coal and coke traffic grew 8.2% YoY to 6,117 units from 5,653 units in Week 24 of 2018.

During the week, Canadian Pacific Railway registered a volume decline across the grain, coal, potash, metals, minerals, and consumer commodity groups. The company registered volume growth across the forest, fertilizer, Sulphur, energy, chemicals, plastics, and automotive product categories.

In Week 24, four of the seven Class I railroad companies recorded a carload traffic decline. Kansas City Southern (KSU) and CSX were the volume gainers. They recorded volume growth of 2.4% and 3.3%, respectively. Canadian National Railway (CNI) reported a flat carload volume during the week.

Canadian Pacific Railway stock has returned 35% year-to-date. The stock has outperformed the First Trust Nasdaq Transportation ETF (FTXR), which has risen 9.8%. FTXR has allocated 42.8% of its funds to the ground freight and logistics services industry.


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