Norfolk Southern Sees -14% Drop in Profit in Q4; Exceeds Wall Street Estimates (NSC)

Railroad transporter Norfolk Southern Corp. (NSC) released its fourth quarter earnings report after hours on Tuesday, posting a significant decline in net income due to poor coal shipments.

The Norfolk, Virginia-based company posted a fourth quarter profit of $413 million, or $1.30 per share, down -14% from $480 million, or $1.42 per share, earned a year earlier. Despite the steep drop, earnings still beat Wall Street views; analysts were expecting an EPS of $1.19.

Norfolk Southern fourth quarter revenue came in at $2.68 billion, down -4% from $2.8 billion in the same period a year earlier. According to FactSet, analysts expected revenue to be $2.67 billion.

Full year 2012 net income declined -9% to $1.75 billion, or $5.37 per share, from $1.9 billion, or $5.45 per share, earned in 2011. Revenue was $11 billion, down from $11.2 billion in 2011.

The company’s poor earnings are a result of a continuing weak coal demand; executives say it is very difficult to estimate when coal shipments will increase. Partly because of the coal demand uncertainty, NSC is planning to reduce its capital spending by 10% in 2013.

Norfolk Southern shares were down slightly during pre-market trading on Wednesday. The stock is down -13.36% over the past year.

The Bottom Line
Shares of Norfolk Southern (NSC) have a 2.99% dividend yield, based on last night’s closing stock price of $66.94. The stock has technical support in the $61-$64 price area. If the shares can firm up, we see overhead resistance around the $68-$70 price levels.

Norfolk Southern Corp. (NSC) is not recommended at this time, holding a Dividend.com DARS™ Rating of 3.3 out of 5 stars.

Be sure to visit our complete recommended list of the Best Dividend Stocks, as well as a detailed explanation of our ratings system here.

Related Stocks:
Stock Market XML and JSON Data API provided by FinancialContent Services, Inc.
Nasdaq quotes delayed at least 15 minutes, all others at least 20 minutes.
Markets are closed on certain holidays. Stock Market Holiday List
By accessing this page, you agree to the following
Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions.
Press Release Service provided by PRConnect.
Stock quotes supplied by Six Financial
Postage Rates Bots go here