Freight railroads form the backbone of any economy and a significant trade en-abler through international containers in and out of North America. They transport essential goods from agricultural prod-ucts, industrial equipment, energy prod-ucts and automotive, as well as consumer products and intermodal. In North Amer-ica, the listed railroad companies own, maintain and operate the vast majority of track, bridges and tunnels which spans 145,000 miles across the region like a spi-der’s web (see Figure 1).
--EVOLUTIONcompared against other modes of moving freight and could gain market share. According to the AAR, moving freight by rail is four times more fuel-efficient than moving freight on the highway, and moving just 5% of freight from truck to rail would result in nine mil-lion fewer tons of greenhouse emissions.
Source: GLIO, Reuters, MSCI. Data as at December 31, 2019 At an aggregate level, the GLIO railroads have posted very impressive performance over the long term, consistently returning between 15-18% on an annualized total return basis ($) for long-term holding pe-riods. This significantly outperformed the broad GLIO Index (8%-11% range) and global equities (5%-10%). It is important to note that the GFC saw a railroad sell-off as companies were viewed as cyclical, but railroads broke
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