Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
What: Shares of trucking company Arkansas Best (Nasdaq: ABFS ) climbed as much as 11% in intraday trading Wednesday after announcing that its freight division will raise its general shipping rates by about 6.9%.
So what: Freight rates are obviously a big key to Arkansas Best's profitability, and given the market's positive reaction to the news, it's clear that investors expect the rate hikes to stick. In fact, today's double-digit jump -- coming on extraordinarily high volume -- is the biggest the shares have had since December 2009.
Now what: I wouldn't be so quick to ride this recent wave of momentum. While today's news suggests that shipping pricing remains favorable for now, Arkansas Best's highly cyclical nature and negative returns on capital don't exactly make it the best long-term opportunity. If you insist on getting into such a fiercely competitive space, industry champs FedEx (NYSE: FDX ) and UPS (NYSE: UPS ) are likely the better bets.
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