The ratings reflect Norfolk Southern Corp.'s favorable commodity mix and consistently strong historical operating performance, offset by a significant debt burden from the 1997 purchase of 58% of Conrail Inc. Initial problems integrating the company's share of Conrail are now largely resolved. Norfolk's larger, well-positioned rail system and diversified traffic mix provide substantial revenue generation and cash flow potential over the long term. Norfolk Southern Corp. began operational integration of its share of Conrail on June 1, 1999 (the "split date"), although results during 1998 and early 1999 were negatively affected by significant spending to prepare for the Conrail integration. Despite extensive planning, immediately after the split date both Norfolk Southern Corp. and CSX Corp., which acquired 42% of Conrail,...
Companies mentioned in this report are: Norfolk Southern Corp.
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