Year to date, The Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway Company, a subsidiary of Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corporation (BNI), has created 23 new intermodal services and established improved performance transit times on 45 different lanes. Burlington Northern is expanding its intermodal terminals in order to better serve its customers.

An intermodal terminal is a railroad facility designed for the loading and unloading of containers and trailers to and from flat cars for movement on the railroad and subsequent movement on the street or highway. Intermodal freight transport reduces cargo handling and so improves security, reduces damages and losses, and allows freight to be transported faster.

In addition to improved intermodal service on the mainline, BNSF is also updating intermodal customer service online by adding new tools that help customers identify specific offerings to best meet their needs.

Earlier this month, competitor Norfolk Southern Corporation (NSC) announced that it has selected a site in Greencastle, PA for a $95 million intermodal rail facility.

Burlington Northern offers rail transportation services to two-thirds of the Western U.S. as well as from the Gulf of Mexico to Canada. It operates 32,000 miles of track.

The current economic slowdown has been hurting Burlington Northern’s volumes. Moreover, the fixed costs associated with the railroad operations could erode earnings significantly. However, strong utility demand is expected to boost revenues going forward. We also anticipate freight rate hikes in the year ahead.

We recommend a Neutral rating on the shares.

Read the full analyst report on “BNI”
Read the full analyst report on “NSC”
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