CSX Corp. saw its earnings increase 135% in the second quarter as the economy recovered from the pandemic. Revenues were up in all business segments, including coal.
In its quarterly earnings report released after markets closed Wednesday, CSX reported net income of $1.173 billion in the second quarter, up from $499 million in the second quarter of 2020. This year’s income was augmented by sale of CSX-owned line segments to the Commonwealth of Virginia for passenger rail operations. The sale added $349 million to net income, so even without it, earnings were up.
Revenue in the second quarter increased 33% from 2020 to $2.99 billion. Expenses decreased 9% year over year to $1.30 billion and operating income improved to $1.69 billion for the quarter. Expenses decreased 9% year over year to $1.3 billion and operating income improved to $1.69 billion for the quarter.
Coal, which has been a declining business segment at CSX for several years, saw an increase in business. Domestic shipments increased by 40% to 11.5 million tons. Export shipments increased by 50% to 20.5 million tons. Total tonnage was up 44%.
According to the earnings report, the increase in export coal was driven by higher international shipments of both thermal coal and metallurgical coal. Domestic coal increased due to higher shipments of utility coal as well as higher steel and industrial shipments. In their call with investment analysts, executives said increased shipments were due in part to customers’ low inventory levels.