CP Rail posts record results, shares hit new high

Wed Jan 29, 2014 5:32pm EST
 
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By Solarina Ho

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canadian Pacific Railway (CP.TO: Quote) (CP.N: Quote), the country's second largest railroad, reported record quarterly results on Wednesday despite taking a hit from extreme winter weather in December.

The railroad also forecast its adjusted earnings would climb by at least 30 percent in 2014 with revenue growing by 6-7 percent from 2013, estimates that some analysts said appeared conservative.

"CP's profitability improvement in 2013 has been nothing short of spectacular," National Bank Financial analyst Cameron Doerksen told clients.

Shares of the Calgary, Alberta-based railway jumped as much as 8.3 percent on the Toronto Stock Exchange on Wednesday to a record high of C$171.31, before closing at C$165.00.

"We closed the year out only 4 percent off of best in class and second best in the industry," Chief Executive Hunter Harrison told analysts during a conference call. "We have got line of sight to be in best in class by the end of 2014."

CP Rail also said it would be making a decision soon on how to deploy its cash. Analysts have speculated the company will either increase its dividend or announce a share buyback, or both, this year.

EXPANDING CRUDE BY RAIL

The company said freight revenue rose 7 percent in the fourth quarter, bolstered by a jump in revenue from shipments of industrial and consumer products, including crude oil.   Continued...

 
Picketers stand at the entrance to the CP Rail yards in Coquitlam, British Columbia May 23, 2012. REUTERS/Andy Clark