Canadian National Railway Co Valuation – Initial Valuation $TSE:CNR

Benjamin Graham taught that Intelligent Investors must do a thorough fundamental analysis of investment opportunities to determine their intrinsic value and inherent risk.  This is best done by utilizing a systematic approach to analysis that will provide investors with a sense of how a specific company compares to another company or by reviewing the 10 Stocks for Using A Benjamin Graham Value Investing Strategy – January 2017.  By using the ModernGraham method one can review a company’s historical accomplishments and determine an intrinsic value that can be compared across industries.  What follows is a stock analysis showing a specific look at how Canadian National Railway Co (TSE:CNR) fares in the ModernGraham valuation model.

Company Profile (obtained from Google Finance): Canadian National Railway Co is engaged in the rail and related transportation business. The Company’s network of approximately 20,000 route miles of track spans Canada and mid-America, connecting approximately three coasts, including the Atlantic, the Pacific and the Gulf of Mexico. The Company’s freight includes approximately seven commodity groups, such as petroleum and chemicals, metals and minerals, forest products, coal, grain and fertilizers, intermodal and automotive. The petroleum and chemicals commodity group comprises various commodities, including chemicals and plastics, refined petroleum products, natural gas liquids, crude oil and sulfur. The metals and minerals commodity group consists primarily of materials related to oil and gas development, steel, iron ore, non-ferrous base metals and ores, construction materials and machinery, and dimensional loads. The forest products commodity group includes various types of lumber, panels, paper, wood pulp and other fibers.

CNR Chart

CNR data by YCharts

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Premium members can view a full ModernGraham valuation of the company and have access to download a PDF version of the valuation for easy reference. Recent valuations of the components of the Dow Jones Industrial Average are available for free members, including this one of Microsoft Corporation.  In addition, here is a post detailing what can be found within each individual company’s valuation.


Downloadable PDF version of this valuation:

ModernGraham Valuation of TSE-CNR – January 2017

Stage 1: Is this company suitable for the Defensive Investor or the Enterprising Investor?

What kind of Intelligent Investor are you?

Defensive Investor; must pass 6 out of the following 7 tests.
1. Adequate Size of the Enterprise Market Cap > $2Bil $70,262,964,685 Pass
2. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Current Ratio > 2 0.70 Fail
3. Earnings Stability Positive EPS for 10 years prior Pass
4. Dividend Record Dividend Payments for 10 years prior Pass
5. Earnings Growth Increase of 33% in EPS in past 10 years using 3 year averages at beginning and end 127.04% Pass
6. Moderate PEmg Ratio PEmg < 20 20.35 Fail
7. Moderate Price to Assets PB Ratio < 2.5 OR PB*PEmg < 50 4.75 Fail
Enterprising Investor; must pass 4 out of the following 5 tests, or be suitable for the Defensive Investor.
1. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Current Ratio > 1.5 0.70 Fail
2. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Debt to NCA < 1.1 -10.49 Fail
3. Earnings Stability Positive EPS for 5 years prior Pass
4. Dividend Record Currently Pays Dividend Pass
5. Earnings Growth EPSmg greater than 5 years ago Pass

Stage 2: Determination of Intrinsic Value

EPSmg $4.50
MG Growth Estimate 8.95%
MG Value $118.66
Opinion Fairly Valued
MG Grade C-
MG Value based on 3% Growth $65.19
MG Value based on 0% Growth $38.22
Market Implied Growth Rate 5.93%
Current Price $91.51
% of Intrinsic Value 77.12%

Canadian National Railway Company does not satisfy the requirements of either the Enterprising Investor or the more conservative Defensive Investor. The Defensive Investor is concerned with the low current ratio, high PEmg and PB ratios. The Enterprising Investor has concerns regarding the level of debt relative to the current assets. As a result, all value investors following the ModernGraham approach should explore other opportunities at this time or proceed cautiously with a speculative attitude.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be Fairly Valued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $2.82 in 2013 to an estimated $4.5 for 2017. This level of demonstrated earnings growth supports the market’s implied estimate of 5.93% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on the Benjamin Graham value investing formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value within a margin of safety relative to the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into Canadian National Railway Company revealed the company was trading above its Graham Number of $46.62. The company pays a dividend of $1.5 per share, for a yield of 1.6% Its PEmg (price over earnings per share – ModernGraham) was 20.35, which was above the industry average of 20.23. Finally, the company was trading above its Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) of $-26.11.

Canadian National Railway Company receives an average overall rating in the ModernGraham grading system, scoring a C-.

Stage 3: Information for Further Research

Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) -$26.11
Graham Number $46.62
PEmg 20.35
Current Ratio 0.70
PB Ratio 4.75
Current Dividend $1.50
Dividend Yield 1.64%
Number of Consecutive Years of Dividend Growth 20


Useful Links:

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Most Recent Balance Sheet Figures

Balance Sheet Information 12/1/2016
Total Current Assets $2,107,000,000
Total Current Liabilities $3,008,000,000
Long-Term Debt $9,448,000,000
Total Assets $37,057,000,000
Intangible Assets $288,000,000
Total Liabilities $22,216,000,000
Shares Outstanding (Diluted Average) 770,100,000

Earnings Per Share History

EPS History
Next Fiscal Year Estimate $4.96
Dec2016 $4.67
Dec2015 $4.39
Dec2014 $3.85
Dec2013 $3.09
Dec2012 $3.06
Dec2011 $2.71
Dec2010 $2.24
Dec2009 $1.96
Dec2008 $1.98
Dec2007 $2.13
Dec2006 $1.96
Dec2005 $1.39
Dec2004 $1.09
Dec2003 $0.87
Dec2002 $0.66
Dec2001 $0.87
Dec2000 $0.78
Dec1999 $0.62
Dec1998 $0.24
Dec1997 $0.39

Earnings Per Share – ModernGraham History

EPSmg History
Next Fiscal Year Estimate $4.50
Dec2016 $4.11
Dec2015 $3.70
Dec2014 $3.23
Dec2013 $2.82
Dec2012 $2.58
Dec2011 $2.30
Dec2010 $2.08
Dec2009 $1.96
Dec2008 $1.87
Dec2007 $1.71
Dec2006 $1.40
Dec2005 $1.07
Dec2004 $0.90
Dec2003 $0.79
Dec2002 $0.71
Dec2001 $0.68

Recommended Reading:

Other ModernGraham posts about the company

None. This is the first time ModernGraham has covered the company.

Other ModernGraham posts about related companies

Norfolk Southern Corp Valuation – August 2016 $NSC
CSX Corporation Valuation – August 2016 $CSX
Union Pacific Corp Valuation – August 2016 $UNP
Norfolk Southern Corp Valuation – February 2016 Update $NSC
CSX Corporation Valuation – February 2016 Update $CSX
Union Pacific Corporation Valuation – February 2016 Update $UNP
Norfolk Southern Corporation Analysis – September 2015 Update $NSC
Kansas City Southern Analysis – August 2015 Update $KSU
CSX Corporation Annual Valuation – 2014 $CSX
Union Pacific Corporation Annual Valuation – 2014 $UNP


The author did not hold a position in any company mentioned in this article at the time of publication and had no intention of changing that position within the next 72 hours.  See my current holdings here.  This article is not investment advice; any reader should speak to a registered investment adviser prior to making any investment decisions.  ModernGraham is not affiliated with the company in any manner.  Please be sure to review our detailed disclaimer.



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