CSX Delivers Record Third Quarter Results on Improving Business Levels

CSX Corp. announced third quarter earnings of $414 million, or $1.08 per share, versus $290 million, or $0.73 per share, in the same period last year.

This represents a 48 percent year-over-year improvement in earnings per share and a third quarter record for the company.

Third quarter revenue increased 16 percent from the prior year to nearly $2.7 billion on a 10 percent overall increase in volume. Revenue growth and continued operating leverage drove a 39 percent increase in operating income to $825 million, and a 490 basis point improvement in the operating ratio to 69.1 percent.

“As the economy continued to improve, CSX saw volume growth in nearly all markets while delivering another strong performance in safety, service and productivity,” said Michael J. Ward, chairman, president and chief executive officer. “These positive financial results are enabling the company to increase investments that create competitive advantages for customers, grow the business, create jobs and deliver shareholder value.”

Accordingly, the company today announced plans to raise its 2010 capital investment to approximately $1.8 billion, up from the previously announced $1.7 billion. In addition, and consistent with its balanced approach to capital deployment, CSX said it expects to repurchase an additional $646 million in shares by the end of the first quarter of 2011, representing the remainder of its existing $3 billion share repurchase program.

These actions build on the company’s September 29 announcement to increase its dividend for the eighth time in five years.