Covenant reports 4Q, full-year net loss

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Covenant Transportation Group Inc. on Wednesday, Dec. 31, announced that total revenue for the fourth quarter of 2011 ended Dec. 31 decreased 1.2 percent to $162.0 million from $163.9 million for 2010. Freight revenue decreased 6.7 percent to $127.5 million from $136.6 million. The company reported a net loss of $2.2 million compared to net income of $0.7 million.

For the year ended Dec. 31, 2011, total revenue increased 0.4 percent to $652.6 million from $649.7 million for 2010. Freight revenue decreased 6.3 percent to $512.0 million from $546.3 million. The company reported a net loss, including impairment charges, of $14.3 million compared to a net income of $3.3 million. On a non-GAAP basis without impairment charges, the company’s 2011 net loss would have been $4.9 million.

“The effect of lower revenue and increased costs unfavorably impacted our asset-based operating ratio,” said David Parker, chairman, president and chief executive officer. “In general, higher rates and lower utilization were experienced across all of our asset-based subsidiaries.”

Parker said Chattanooga, Tenn.-based Covenant experienced pressure on expenses in several areas. “We plan to continue managing our idle time and truck speeds, investing in more fuel-efficient tractors to improve our fuel miles per gallon, using fuel hedges from time to time to reduce our exposure to rapid increases in fuel prices, and partnering with customers to adjust fuel surcharge programs which are inadequate to recover a fair portion of rising fuel costs,” he said.