CN's fourth quarter profit increases to $610 million on record revenues

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MONTREAL - Canada's largest railway is raising its dividend to shareholders by 15 per cent following a more profitable fourth quarter and record-high quarterly revenue.

Canadian National Railway (TSX:CNR) says its profit increased to $610 million in the fourth quarter on record revenues and carloads.

It earned $1.41 per diluted share for the period ended Dec. 31, in line with analyst estimates.

That compared to $1.32 per share or $592 million a year earlier.

CN's revenues grew by 6.6 per cent to a record $2.53 billion, from $2.38 billion a year ago.

The Montreal-based North American railway says its strong results and positive outlook support a higher quarterly cash dividend of 43 cents per common share.

For the full year, CN earned $2.68 billion, or $6.12 per share, compared to $2.46 billion or $5.41 per share in 2011. Revenues grew to $9.92 billion, up from $9.03 billion a year earlier.

Adjusting for one time items, the full year profit was $2.46 billion or $5.61 per share, up from $2.2 billion or $4.84 per share in the prior year.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected adjusted earnings per share of $5.60 on revenue of $9.93 billion.

Organizations: CN, Canadian National Railway, TSX North American Thomson Reuters

Geographic location: MONTREAL, Canada

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