SAN MATEO, Calif. — Con-way Inc. said on Wednesday that its first-quarter loss narrowed from a year-ago period hurt by a huge charge.
The trucking company recorded a loss of $4 million, or 8 cents per share, in the latest quarter. In the year-ago period, Con-way posted a loss of $154 million, or $3.35 per share, including a goodwill impairment charge of $2.93 per share related to its Con-way Truckload division.
The latest quarter included a tax charge of 5 cents per share related to the recently passed health care reform, and a charge of 4 cents per share to write down the value of an intangible asset related to its 2007 purchase of Chic Logistics. Excluding those items, the company recorded a profit of a penny per share.
Revenue rose 20.7 percent to $1.16 billion from $962.9 million.
On average, analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected a loss of 8 cents per share on revenue of $1.1 billion. Analyst estimates typically exclude one time items.
Trucking companies have suffered during the recession, with demand down while trailers are parked empty.
However, Con-way President and CEO Douglas W. Stotlar said demand for less-than-truckload shipments at Con-way Freight is improving, which should lead to stronger pricing.
Demand for full-truckload transport is increasing with the recovering economy, he said, and capacity is down compared with a year earlier. That means spot prices — the amount a trucking customer pays without a long-term contract — is improving, although contract rate increases have been slower to gain traction, he said.
Kevin Jones of The Trucker staff can be reached for comment at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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