XPO Logistics (XPO -0.29%) has been on fire this year, and November was no different. Shares of the freight and logistics giant soared 14% last month even as close rivals FedEx (FDX 0.87%) and United Parcel Service (UPS 0.33%) managed to clock only about 3% gains each. What gives? You guessed it right: earnings.
On the very first day of November, XPO Logistics gave investors a solid reason to cheer when it delivered a stellar third quarter, with its revenue, net income, and cash flow hitting record highs, thanks to surging demand for last-mile deliveries, booming e-commerce, and intermodal (moving goods using multiple modes of transportation) strength.
As I highlighted in a recent article, XPO is making the most of a boom in e-commerce and last-mile deliveries, which involves the movement of heavy goods like furniture and home appliances from fulfillment centers to a customer's doorstep. XPO is the leader in last-mile today even as freight and logistics heavyweights FedEx and UPS are missing out on the big opportunity.
Investor reaction to XPO's strong quarter was all the more pronounced after FedEx and UPS' recent earnings report. While FedEx had its own set of internal problems to deal with, UPS delivered a comparatively stronger quarter, reporting 7% growth in year-over-year revenue and lifting its full-year adjusted earnings-per-share guidance.
However, it appears investors are more excited about XPO's future and bid the shares higher, going by some of the plans that CEO Bradley Jacobs revealed during the earnings:
We're executing major initiatives around pricing, utilization and sales productivity to capitalize on the large opportunities at hand. Our sales force has closed $2.1 billion of new business through September, up 49%, and our pipeline continues to exceed $3 billion globally. These levers, combined with our leading positions in key sectors, are fueling organic growth that continues to outpace the industry. We're exploring acquisition opportunities that will augment this momentum.
XPO Logistics' third-quarter report proved yet again that the company is on a solid growth trajectory, and I don't see a reason why the stock shouldn't continue to run higher, backed by strong earnings and cash flow growth. E-commerce is a strong tailwind for XPO and that should continue to fuel the stock.