U.S. Xpress revenue, net income up in 1Q

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U.S. Xpress Enterprises announced that its revenue for the first quarter of 2006 increased 11.4 percent to $299.7 million compared with $269.1 million in the first quarter of 2005. The company reported net income for the first quarter of $734,000, compared with a net loss of $2.1 million in the prior-year period.

On Feb. 28, the company acquired additional equity in both Arnold Transportation and Total Transportation, increasing its ownership interest in each to 80 percent from 49 percent. Accordingly, the financial results from Feb. 28 through March 31 of Arnold and Total are included in the company’s consolidated financial statements. Consolidated revenue and operating income for the 2006 first quarter includes $33 million of revenue and $1.8 million in operating income of Arnold and Total for the period.

During the quarter, truckload revenue, excluding the effect of fuel surcharges, increased 12.2 percent to $241.3 million from $215.1 million a year ago. The increase in truckload revenue was driven by the addition of Arnold and Total and a 4.2 percent increase in rate per loaded mile offset by a 1.6 percent reduction in revenue miles per tractor and a reduction in expedited rail revenue. Truckload operating income for the quarter increased by 141.2 percent to $4.4 million in the 2006 quarter from $1.8 million in the 2005 quarter.

Revenue of Xpress Global Systems declined to $22.4 million in the quarter compared with $41 million in the comparable 2005 quarter due primarily to the sale and exit from the airport-to-airport business in the second quarter of 2005. Xpress Global Systems’ operating income for the quarter was $369,000 compared with a $3.5 million operating loss in the prior-year quarter.

“During the first quarter, we achieved improved operating results in each of our business segments,” says Patrick Quinn, co-chairman of the Chattanooga, Tenn-based company. “Although we faced a slightly weaker truckload freight environment than expected, especially along the west coast, we achieved improvements in operating income in our truckload segment through increased pricing and from the contributions of Arnold and Total. We had originally expected Xpress Global Systems to return to profitability after the first quarter, but management of Xpress Global achieved this goal sooner by successfully implementing a new rating and yield management program, reducing overhead costs and improving productivity.”