Record Run

The backbreaking burden of U.S. railroads is their mountain of fixed charges (bond interest, equipment rentals, taxes, sinking fund requirements), a load greater than that of any other U.S. industry. Last week, the ICC released startling 1943 figures: for the first time in U.S. history, along with dividends and other income the railroads earned enough ($596,228,149) in the first five months to pay fixed charges for the entire year.

This means that every dollar earned between June 1 and Dec. 31, after payment of taxes and operating expenses, will be clear net profit. But railroad stockholders are still a long way...

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