Freight volumes for 2014 reached record levels, with wagon loadings up by 8% and tonne-km up by 10%. 2014 operating ratio also improved by 1.5 points to 61.9%.

2014 revenues increased by 15% to $C 12.13bn, compared with the previous year. Petroleum and chemical, grain and fertiliser revenues increased by 21%, metal and mineral revenues rose by 20%, intermodal revenues grew by 13%, while automotive revenues increased by 12%

CN attributed the rise in revenues mainly to the higher freight volumes due to a record 2013-14 Canadian grain crop, as well as strong energy markets and new intermodal and automotive business.

Mr Claude Mongeau, CN president and CEO, says: "CN delivered a strong fourth-quarter 2014 performance, concluding a remarkable year characterised by brutal first-quarter winter weather, followed by a strong rebound in March, and capped by record full-year freight volumes. We're particularly proud of our solid operating performance that allowed us to move record volumes of Western Canadian grain and equally strong US grain shipments."

Mongeau says CN plans to increase its capital spending by roughly $C 300m in 2015 to a total of approximately $C 2.6bn.