September 13, 2017 / 7:25 PM / 7 days ago

CP, CN Rail remain optimistic on grain volume despite dry weather

Sept 13 (Reuters) - Canadian railroad operators remained hopeful that grain volumes for the rest of the year would not be impacted by dry, hot weather that affected wheat and canola crop production in the country’s western farm belt.

Analysts were concerned that hot weather would adversely impact grain volumes, which are key for Canadian railroads.

“I‘m cautiously optimistic, that if the weather cooperates with us, there’s actually some upside there,” Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd’s Chief Executive Keith Creel said at a Morgan Stanley conference on Wednesday.

CP Chief Marketing Officer John Brooks had said in July he expects the company would feel the impact of dry conditions in North Dakota and as uncertainty grows in southern Alberta and Saskatchewan.

Canadian National Railway CFO Ghislain Houle said some customers were seeing an “upside” in the grains business.

The drought affected the southern part of the country and Saskatchewan, Houle said. “As you know we’re in the north.” Shares of the companies were marginally down on the Toronto Stock Exchange. (Reporting by John Benny in Bengaluru and Allison Lampert in Montreal; Editing by Arun Koyyur)

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