The Globe and Mail reports in its Thursday, Sept. 28, edition that Scotia Capital analyst Konark Gupta continues to rate Canadian National Railway "sector perform." The Globe's David Leeder writes in the Eye On Equities column that Mr. Gupta chipped to $2 from his share target taking it to $170. Analysts on average target the shares at $164.08. While Mr. Gupta sees early signs of a trough in the freight market as third quarter data "looks less negative than Q2 on a year-over-year basis," he warns near-term conditions remain "highly uncertain." He says he is "comfortable" with the latest guidance from Canadian railway companies. Mr. Gupta says in a note: "We note Canadian rails have lesser exposure to autos than their U.S. counterparts (CN has the least exposure). In addition, continued macro uncertainty maintained pressure on Q3 traffic. On the flip side, yields (revenue/RTM) could continue to decelerate as strong core pricing is offset by fuel surcharge, mix and accessorial fee headwinds along with reduced FX tailwind. ... We expect EPS consensus to further come down for CNR and CP in the coming weeks as estimates are updated for traffic and other inputs."
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