J.B. Hunt helped by strong intermodal
Strong performance by its intermodal business helped J.B. Hunt Transport Services report a profit of $78.2 million in the third quarter ending Sept. 30, compared to $68.7 million in the same 2011 period.
Revenue was $1.05 billion in the quarter, compared to $947 million in the third quarter of last year.
J.B. Hunt detailed segment performance as follows:
- Intermodal revenue was up 15 percent to $794 million, operating revenue up 25 percent to $97.9 million. Hunt said positive intermodal results came "from steady load growth, improved container utilization and drayage efficiencies contributed to better overall network balance. Cost increases in rail purchase transportation and from shortages in the available driver market partially offset the benefits of improved operations."
- Dedicated Contract Services' revenue was up 1 percent to $273 million, while operating revenue was down 14 percent to $25.6 million. Hunt said the decline in operating revenue was "primarily related to implementation costs incurred during the current quarter from several new customer accounts starting during the past four months."
- Integrated Capacity Solutions had a 30 percent increase in revenue to $121 million and operating income was up 43 percent to $5.5 million.
- Truck revenue was down 8 percent to $117 million, while truck operating income was down 41 percent to $4 million when compared to the same 2011 period. The decrease in revenue reflects a 9 percent reduction in fleet size. At the end of the period, JBT operated 2,381 tractors compared to 2,605 a year ago. Hunt said rates per mile, excluding fuel surcharge, increased 5.9 percent due largely
to freight mix changes, spot pricing, and temporary customer fleet
activity related to one-time weather events. But it said "improved rates were not sufficient to offset lower utilization and increases in empty miles, employee health care costs, driver wages, and costs to attract independent contractors." - Chris Dupin
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