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CSX Corp (CSX) to Report Q4 Earnings: What's in the Offing?

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CSX Corporation CSX is scheduled to report fourth-quarter 2021 results on Jan 20, after the closing bell.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the company’s fourth-quarter earnings has been revised downward by a penny in the past 30 days to 42 cents per share. However, the company has an impressive earnings history of 5.8%, having outperformed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the trailing four quarters and missing once.

CSX Corporation Price and EPS Surprise

CSX Corporation Price and EPS Surprise
CSX Corporation Price and EPS Surprise

CSX Corporation price-eps-surprise | CSX Corporation Quote

Factors to Note

Weakness in volumes due to the Omicron-variant-led spike in coronavirus cases might have hurt CSX’s fourth-quarter performance. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for intermodal volumes indicates a negligible dip from the past year's fourth-quarter reported figure. The same for merchandise volumes suggests a decrease of 3.3% from the previous year quarter’s reported figure. The consensus mark for coal volumes also indicates a 2.9% decline from the fourth-quarter 2020 figure.

The company expects peak season expenses to be higher than normal for the fourth quarter due to supply-chain disruptions. This might further push up operating expenses for the company and weigh on its bottom line.

Rising fuel prices and an increase in labor and fringe expenses are also expected to have hurt CSX’s fourth-quarter 2021 bottom-line results. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for fuel price per gallon has surged 70% to $2.43.
However, the acquisition of Quality Carriers in July is expected to have aided the railroad operator's fourth-quarter 2021 revenue numbers.

Earnings Whispers

The proven Zacks model does not conclusively predict an earnings beat for CSX this time around. The combination of a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), 2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold) increases the odds of an earnings beat. However, this is not the case here as elaborated below. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Earnings ESP: CSX has an Earnings ESP of -0.69%. You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they’re reported with our Earnings ESP Filter.

Zacks Rank: CSX carries a Zacks Rank #2.

Highlights of Q3 Earnings

CSX’s third-quarter 2021 earnings of 43 cents per share surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 38 cents. The bottom line surged 34.4% year over year owing to higher revenues. Total revenues of $3,292 million outperformed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3030.9 million. The top line jumped 24.3% year over year.

Stocks to Consider

Investors interested in the broader Transportation sector may consider C.H. Robinson Worldwide CHRW, Southwest Airlines LUV and Landstar System LSTR, as these stocks possess the right combination of elements to beat on earnings this reporting cycle.

C.H. Robinson currently has an Earnings ESP of +7.82% and a Zacks Rank #3. C.H. Robinson will report fourth-quarter results on Feb 2.

C.H. Robinson’s results are likely to be aided by higher revenues owing to the improving freight market conditions in the United States. Shares of CHRW have gained 10.3% in a year’s time.

Southwest Airlines has an Earnings ESP of +172.73% and is currently a #3 Ranked player. Southwest Airlines will release fourth-quarter 2021 results on Jan 27.

Southwest Airlines expects to be profitable in the fourth quarter of 2021 owing to a strong Thanksgiving holiday travel period, higher fares and benefits from the co-brand credit card agreement with Chase.

Landstar System has an Earnings ESP of +3.19% and is Zacks #3 Ranked presently. Landstar System will release fourth-quarter 2021 results on Jan 26.

Landstar’s fourth-quarter results are expected to be aided by an improved freight scenario in the United States. Higher truck rates owing to tight truck capacity should aid December-quarter performance.

Stay on top of upcoming earnings announcements with the Zacks Earnings Calendar.


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CSX Corporation (CSX) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Southwest Airlines Co. (LUV) : Free Stock Analysis Report

C.H. Robinson Worldwide, Inc. (CHRW) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Landstar System, Inc. (LSTR) : Free Stock Analysis Report

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