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BNSF Q2 coal volumes, revenues slip from start of year but gain YOY

BNSF Railway Co. saw its second-quarter coal business slide from the first three months of the year, but volumes and revenues remained significantly higher than totals seen in 2016, a company regulatory filing showed.

In its 10-Q filing, the railroad reported second-quarter 2017 coal volumes of 437,000 carloads, down 8% from the first quarter, and revenues of $912 million, down 5%. However, revenues per carload increased 3.3% quarter over quarter to $2,087.

Second-quarter coal-carload counts were up 21% and revenues were up 39% compared to the same period in 2016, when coal markets fell to historic lows.

Through the first half of 2017, coal revenues of 1.87 billion were up 31% from the year-ago period, and carload volumes were up 20% to 912,000. Coal volumes improved because of higher natural gas prices and more utility burn compared to a warm winter in 2016, the company said in its filing.

Jim Levesque is a reporter for S&P Global Platts, which, like S&P Global Market Intelligence, is owned by S&P Global Inc.