Trucking and logistics company CNF
Total revenue for the first quarter rose 12% to almost $948 million, and operating income grew 32% to a bit over $73 million. During the quarter, the company began its two-year, $300 million share buyback program by repurchasing $32 million worth of stock.
Results were led by the company's Con-Way business, which is largely a collection of regional less-than-truckload carriers. Revenue was up 11%, and tight expense control (as seen in an improved operating ratio) led operating income to climb 31% to just under $63 million for the quarter.
The Con-Way trucking business saw a 6.6% increase in tonnage per day and a 5% improvement in carrier yield. A recent rate increase seems to have staying power, and management expects a mid-single-digit increase in tonnage for the next quarter.
Menlo Worldwide, the company's logistics business, also had a good quarter. Revenues climbed 12% and operating income grew 15% for the period. The company's Vector SCM business posted 69% growth in the quarter, despite ongoing problems with GeneralMotors
Management said that it saw growth in April. Saying it believes this to be "a great time to be in our business," management took an extra step to meaningfully boost earnings guidance for the next quarter. Suffice it to say the regional less-than-truckload business doesn't seem to be slowing down for CNF.
CNF management continues to do a great job of controlling expenses, and annualized return on equity for the quarter came in at more than 15%. The stock nevertheless trades at a discount to its peers, and its trailing EV-to-FCF ratio of about 17 is quite good for the sector. For investors who think that the trucking and logistics market still looks healthy, CNF is likely worth a little due diligence.
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Fool contributor Stephen Simpson has no financial interest in any stocks mentioned (that means he's neither long nor short the shares).