Union Pacific Corporation (NYSE:UNP) Q4 2014 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Jan 22, 2015 • 08:45 am ET

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Union Pacific Corporation (NYSE:UNP) Q4 2014 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

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Presentation
Operator
Operator

Thank you for accessing Union Pacific Corporation's 2014 Fourth Quarter Earnings Conference Call held at 8:45 A.M. Eastern Time on January 22, 2015, in Omaha, Nebraska. This presentation and the accompanying materials include statements that contain estimates, projections or expectations regarding the Corporation's financial results, and operations and future economic conditions.

These statements are forward-looking statements as defined by the Federal Securities Laws. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual performance or results to differ materially from those expressed in the statements. And materials that accompany this presentation include more detailed information regarding forward looking information and these risks and uncertainties.

Greetings, welcome to the Union Pacific fourth quarter 2014 conference call. At this time all participants are in a listen-only mode. A brief question-and-answer session will follow the formal presentation. [Operator Instruction]. As a remainder this conference is being recorded and the slides for today's presentation are available on Union Pacific's website.

It is now my pleasure to introduce your host, Mr. Jack Koraleski, CEO for Union Pacific. Thank you, Mr. Koraleski. You may now begin.

Executive
John Koraleski

Thank you, Rob and good morning, everybody. Welcome to Union Pacific's fourth quarter earnings conference call. With me today here in Omaha are Eric Butler, our Executive Vice President of Marketing and Sales; Lance Fritz, our President and Chief Operating Officer; and Rob Knight, our Chief Financial Officer. This morning we're pleased to report that Union Pacific achieved fourth quarter earnings of $1.61 per share, an increase of 27% compared to the fourth quarter 2013 and another quarterly record.

Total volumes were up 6% with increases in all six of our business groups. Industrial products and coal showed particular strength up 10% and 9% respectively. These strong volumes along with solid core pricing and productivity helped drive 3.6 points of improvement on our operating ratio to a record 61.4% for the fourth quarter. These strong fourth quarter results rounded out a full-year 2014 which was very successful on many fronts.

We posted record financial results in revenue, operating income, earnings per share, and operating ratio. The strong demand we experienced back in the first quarter was sustained throughout 2014 driving total volume growth of 7% for the year. Robust volumes challenged our network for much of the year and we remain focused on adding the necessary resources to safely improve service and we're encouraged with the progress that we're making. We remain fully committed to deliver safe, efficient, value added service for our customers.

So with that, I'm going to turn it over to Eric.

Executive
Eric Butler

Thanks, Jack and good morning. In the fourth quarter volume was up 6% as solid demand across our franchise led to volume gains in all of our business groups. Strength in industrial products and goal led our volume gain for the quarter and intermodal and chemicals volumes were strong as well. Growth moderated in ag products during the quarter as we are now comparing to the strong grain harvest in 2013.

Core price increased