Arkansas Best Corp. today, Oct. 23, reported a more than 22 percent fall in third-quarter net income. Third-quarter income from continuing operations were $31.55 million or $1.24 per share, compared to $40.21 million or $1.58 per share a year ago.
Excluding a previously disclosed after-tax settlement accounting charge of $0.02 per share, earnings for the current-year quarter were $1.26 per share, up by $0.06 per share from the year-ago quarter earnings from continuing operations of $1.20 per share, after adjusting for a $0.38 per share gain on the sale of properties to G.I. Trucking Co.
The company posted operating revenues of $507.3 million for the quarter, up from $463.3 million in the same quarter of last year. ABF’s total tonnage per day increased by 2.5 percent, but the company said that since the end of the quarter, the percentage change in its total tonnage per day is running in the mid-to-high single digits below the same period last year.
“In early October, ABF began to experience a slowdown in freight tonnage that appears to be related mostly to retail customers who have delayed the timing of normal holiday orders,” said Robert A. Davidson, president and chief executive officer of the Fort Smith, Ark.-based company. “In addition, based on the continuing decline of ABF’s spot volume tonnage, we suspect that this slowdown is related to softness in the truckload market.”