Canadian Pacific Announces Second-Quarter Results

CALGARY — Canadian Pacific Railway Limited announced its second-quarter results today, and net income in the second quarter was $155 million, a decrease of 40 percent from $257 million in 2007, and diluted earnings per share was $1.00, a decrease from $1.64 in the second quarter of 2007.

Highlights include:

  • Total revenues were essentially flat at $1.22 billion
  • Income before foreign exchange gains and losses on long-term debt and other specified items decreased to $150 million from $175 million
  • Adjusted diluted earnings per share decreased to $0.97 from $1.12
  • Operating ratio was 79.4 per cent compared with 74.7 per cent

“This was a tough quarter with the unprecedented rise in fuel prices, the North American economic downturn, and prolonged flooding on our US mainline,” said Fred Green, President and CEO. “Combined, these had a significant impact on CP’s earnings.”

“We see the current economic conditions continuing, and CP is taking aggressive steps which should position us well for 2009,” Green added. “I have accelerated a rigorous process to improve our productivity, efficiency, and yield.”

Freight revenues increased almost two per cent despite a decrease in traffic. This was mainly due to pricing, inclusive of fuel recoveries. CP experienced strong growth in industrial and consumer products of 17 per cent, intermodal of nine per cent and coal of six per cent.

This was offset by decreases in forest products of 21 per cent, grain of nine percent, sulphur and fertilizers of five per cent, and automotive of two per cent.

Operating expenses increased seven per cent with fuel up 34 per cent and purchased services and other, depreciation and amortization and materials up from two to nine percent. This was offset by a decrease in equipment rents of 20 per cent and compensation and benefits of four per cent.

Net income for the first half of 2008 was $246 million compared with $385 million in 2007, a decrease of 36 per cent. Diluted earnings per share was $1.59 down from $2.46.

Freight revenues increased two per cent to $2.3 billion and operating expenses were up seven per cent to $1.9 billion.

Income decreased to $267 million from $297 million. Diluted earnings per share were $1.72 down from $1.90. Operating ratio deteriorated 400 basis points to 81.0 per cent from 77 percent.

“We continue to focus on driving positive pricing gains and strengthening our fuel recovery and cost management programs,” said Mike Lambert, Chief Financial Officer. “However, these will not be enough to offset the challenges we are facing with the higher price of fuel and the slowing North American economy. We are updating our guidance to reflect our substantially higher fuel assumptions and the deteriorating economic conditions. We now expect our full-year adjusted diluted earnings per share to be in the range of $4.00 to $4.20, down from our previous guidance of $4.40 to $4.60.”

The 2008 estimate assumes an average currency exchange rate of the U.S. dollar at par with the Canadian dollar. Crude oil prices are expected to average US $121 per barrel for the year (versus the previous assumption of US $98 per barrel) with the second half averaging roughly US $140 per barrel. Crack spreads are expected to average US $23 per barrel for the year (versus the previous assumption of US $20 per barrel) with the second half averaging US $27 per barrel. The estimated average all-in fuel price is expected to be between US $3.80 and $3.90 per U.S. gallon for the year.

CP strives to mitigate the impact of any changes in WTI and crack margins through fuel recovery programs. However, these programs do not completely offset the changes in expense caused by changes in WTI and crack margins.

— PRNewswire-FirstCall