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Navistar reports ‘another great’ third quarter with net income of $156 million

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Navistar reports ‘another great’ third quarter with net income of $156 million
In its third quarter report, Navistar said its gross margin for the full year is expected to be in the range of 17.75% and 18% and its core market share is forecast to be between 18.5% and 19%. Pictured is the International LT series day cab. (Courtesy: NAVISTSAR)

LISLE, Ill. — Navistar International Corp. Thursday said it had posted third quarter 2019 net income of $156 million, or $1.56 per diluted share, compared to third quarter 2018 net income of $170 million, or $1.71 per diluted share.

Navistar manufactures International brand trucks.

Third quarter 2019 adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) was $266 million, compared to $218 million in the same period one year ago. Adjusted net income in the quarter grew 55 percent to $147 million, compared to $95 million last year.

Revenues in the quarter were $3 billion, up 17 percent from the same period one year ago, primarily due to a 28 percent increase in volumes in the company’s core market, which is Class 6-8 trucks and buses in the United States and Canada).

“This was another great quarter for Navistar,” said Troy A. Clarke, Navistar chairman, president and chief executive officer. “Market share increased, revenues and earnings grew at double-digit rates, and we made significant investments in our operations and our Uptime promise.”

Navistar ended third quarter 2019 with $1.16 billion in consolidated cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities. Manufacturing cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities were $1.11 billion at the end of the quarter. The company generated $250 million of manufacturing free cash flow during the quarter largely because of strong adjusted EBITDA and net working capital performance.

Clarke said the company had a number of uptime-related highlights during its third quarter. Navistar’s warranty performance and service partnership agreement with Love’s and Speedco, initially announced in March, is now fully operational, activating the commercial vehicle industry’s largest service network in North America.

Additionally, the company’s latest parts distribution center (PDC) opened late last month near Memphis to help cater to the growing demand for parts and quicker maintenance turnaround times. Complementing the new PDC are new enhancements to Navistar’s retail inventory management system, resulting in 50 percent lower emergency parts orders, further maximizing Uptime for the company’s customers.

Also during the quarter, the company announced it would be making capital investments of approximately $125 million in new and expanded manufacturing facilities at its Huntsville, Ala. plant to produce next-generation big-bore powertrains developed with its global alliance partner TRATON.

The company updated the following 2019 full-year industry and financial guidance:

  • Industry retail deliveries of Class 6-8 trucks and buses in the United States and Canada are forecast to be 435,000 to 455,000 units, with Class 8 retail deliveries of 295,000 to 315,000 units.
  • Gross margin is expected to be in the range of 17.75% and 18%.
  • Core market share is forecast to be between 18.5% and 19%.

The company reaffirmed the following 2019 full-year financial guidance:

  • Navistar revenues are expected to be between $11.25 billion and $11.75 billion.
  • The company’s adjusted EBITDA is expected to be between $875 million and $925 million.

Additionally, the company forecasts the industry’s 2020 retail deliveries of Class 6-8 trucks and buses in the United States and Canada to be in the range of 335,000 to 365,000 units, with Class 8 retail deliveries between 210,000 and 240,000 units.

“We are on course for a strong end to 2019, and we’re not standing still,” Clarke said. “The company is recapturing market share and is growing revenue, EBITDA and cash flow. We remain focused on setting ourselves up for long-term success.”

 

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ATA Truck Tonnage Index increased 3.3% in 2019

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Ata truck tonnage index increased 3.3% in 2019
After falling 3.4% in November 2019, the Truck Tonnage Index recovered in December, posting a 4% monthly increase. (courtesy: ATA)

ARLINGTON, Vir. — American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index increased 3.3% in 2019, about half the annual gain in 2018 (6.7%). The increase was the tenth consecutive year in which the tonnage index has risen above the previous year.
The advanced SA For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index rose 4% in December after falling 3.4% in November. In December, the index equaled 118.2 (2015=100) compared with 113.6 in November.
“Last year was not a terrible year for for-hire truck tonnage, and despite the increase at the end of the year, 2019 was very uneven for the industry,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “The overall annual gain masks the very choppy freight environment throughout the year, which made the market feel worse for many fleets. In December, strong housing starts helped advance the index forward.” It is important to note that ATA’s tonnage data is dominated by contract freight.
November’s reading was revised down slightly compared with the December 2019 data. In December 2018, the SA index rose 3%, which was preceded by a 2% year-over-year drop in November.
The not seasonally adjusted index, which represents the change in tonnage hauled by the fleets before seasonal adjustment, equaled 112.7 in December, 2% below the November level (115.1). In calculating the index, 100 represents the index from 2015.
Trucking serves as a barometer of the U.S. economy, representing 70.2% of tonnage carried by all modes of domestic freight transportation, including manufactured and retail goods. Trucks hauled 10.77 billion tons of freight in 2017. Motor carriers collected $700.1 billion, or 79.3% of total revenue earned by all transport modes.

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ACT Research For-Hire Trucking Index: Rates slip amid strong holiday freight

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Act research for-hire trucking index: rates slip amid strong holiday freight
For-hire index rates slip, but signs of freight recovery in 2020 "encouraging" (©2020 FOTOSEARCH)

COLUMBUS, Ind. – The latest release of ACT’s For-Hire Trucking Index showed improvement in for-hire freight volumes and utilization. The data used in the Index included December. Respectively, the data indicated 55.5 and 52.3 diffusion index readings, both up four points from November on a seasonally adjusted basis. But even as for-hire capacity contracted again, the Freight Rates Index slid to 48.7 in December.
The ACT For-Hire Trucking Index is a monthly survey of for-hire trucking service providers. ACT Research converts responses into diffusion indexes, where the neutral or flat level is 50.
Tim Denoyer, ACT Research’s Vice President and Senior Analyst commented, “We see encouraging signs that the freight downturn is in its late stages and the market will rebalance in 2020. However, the ongoing rate pressure, even as volumes ramped into the holidays, is symptomatic of ongoing excess industry capacity. Our survey respondents clearly get it, and reduced capacity for a sixth straight month, so we can pretty easily deduce that private fleet capacity additions through year-end 2019 are the main factor continuing to pressure for-hire rates.”
The ACT Freight Forecast provides forecasts for the direction of truck volumes and contract rates quarterly through 2020, with three years of annual forecasts for the truckload, less-than-truckload and intermodal segments of the transportation industry. For the truckload spot market, the report provides forecasts for the next twelve months.
In 2019, the average accuracy of ACT’s truckload spot rate forecasts was 98%. The ACT Research Freight Forecast uses equipment capacity modeling and the firm’s economics expertise to provide anticipated freight rates, helping businesses in transportation and logistics management plan with confidence.

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2019 trading performance ended on a sour note for transportation companies

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For major shippers, 2019 ended on a sour note; transportation companies have worst trading performance across market.
Transportation companies are showing the worst performance across the market and trading. Shares in railroad, trucking and ocean shipping companies are selling off. (Courtesy: FotoSearch)

For major shipping companies dealing with trade wars and slowing global growth, conditions appear to have deteriorated as 2019 came to a close.

Transportation companies are the worst performers across the market in trading. Shares in trucking, railroad and ocean shipping companies are selling off.

The trade war between the U.S. and China has taken a toll. Government data showed Friday that China’s economy grew by 6.1% last year, down from 6.6% in 2018, and a multi-decade low. The Trump administration has agreed to cancel planned tariff hikes on additional Chinese imports as part of an interim deal announced this week, and Beijing promised to buy more American farm goods.

Punitive duties already imposed by both sides, however, will stay in place.

JB Hunt Transport Services Inc., a trucking company, on Friday reported profits that fell well short of what industry analysts had expected, according to a survey by Zacks Investment Research. Shares in that company are down 2.7%.

FedEx reported last month that its profit slid 40%, hurt by higher costs, a shorter holiday season and its move to cut ties with Amazon.com. It too, cut its profit expectations.

UPS reports fourth quarter and full year results at the end of the month. Its shares have been falling over the past month and were down in trading as of Friday.

Global shipping and logistics provider Expeditors International said Friday that it expects fourth quarter operating income to fall between $177 million and $183 million.

CEO Jeffrey Musser cited trade disputes and slowing growth for a number of economies. The report comes a day after the railroad CSX reported a 7% decline in the freight it hauled during the final months of the year.

“We’ve seen impacts throughout the year from these market conditions, but the pace at which these changes occurred accelerated dramatically in the fourth quarter,” Musser said. “We know this environment will change over time, as it always has in the past.”

Shares of Expeditors International of Washington Inc., based in Seattle, slumped almost 5%.

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