NEW YORK, April 20 Shares of railroad operator
CSX Corp jumped more than 6 percent on Thursday after
the company reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings and
its CEO said it aims at lower costs, including job reductions,
and improved margins.
The company also announced a new share repurchase program
and said it expects record efficiency gains on its way to a
full-year 2017 operating ratio in the mid-60s.
Chief Executive Hunter Harrison said in a call with analysts
that the No. 3 U.S. railroad also plans to bring 250-300 jobs it
has in India to the United States.
Harrison said the Jacksonville, Florida-based railroad would
trim costs, including through employee attrition, to improve
margins through 2017 and beyond.
"It's not going to happen overnight," he said, adding: "I
think you can have industry leading margins. I think you will
The company's stock hit a life high of $51.28 in early
trading on Thursday and was last trading up 6.5 percent at
$49.98 on Nasdaq.
Harrison, who was appointed chief executive officer earlier
this year, said he expects to see attrition in the "8.5 - 9
percent" range, but declined to specify the number of
reductions. He noted, however, that the plan includes employees,
contractors, consultants, "all of the above - everybody that
gets a check."
Regarding the jobs in India, Harrison said: "I can't worry
about India right now. I’m more worried about CSX and
Jacksonville and made in America."
CSX on Wednesday said its quarterly net profit gains were
driven by rising freight volumes across most of the markets it
covers and said it plans to cut costs and boost profitability
(Reporting by Luciana Lopez; additional reporting by Allison
Lampert in Montreal; Editing by Dan Grebler)