J. B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc., (NASDAQ:JBHT) announced record fourth quarter 2012 net earnings of $84 million, or diluted earnings per share of 70 cents vs. fourth quarter 2011 net earnings of $72.6 million, or 61 cents per diluted share. Fourth quarter 2011 results included $3.9 million of pretax expense related to severance agreements for executive retirees and a charitable contribution, which reduced net earnings by 2 cents per diluted share.
Total operating revenue for the current quarter was $1.34 billion, compared with $1.2 billion for the fourth quarter 2011. Load growth of 11% in Intermodal (JBI) helped drive a 13% increase in segment revenue. Dedicated Contract Services (DCS) segment revenue increased by 9% primarily from the addition of new accounts. Integrated Capacity Solutions (ICS) segment revenue increased by 30% mostly from a 47% increase in load volume. Truck (JBT) segment revenue decreased 12% primarily from a 19% reduction in fleet size compared to a year ago. Current quarter total operating revenue, excluding fuel surcharges, increased approximately 10% vs. the comparable quarter 2011.
Operating income for the current quarter increased to $143.3 million vs. $122.3 million for the fourth quarter 2011. The increase is primarily from the higher revenue on greater load volumes and improved network balance in JBI, new incremental customer accounts in DCS, and greater load volumes and better gross margins in ICS. These improvements were partially offset by increased costs across almost all cost categories. Cost controls allowed for operating income to grow at a faster pace than revenues, improving overall margin.
Net earnings rose 16% to $84.0 million in the current quarter from $72.6 million in 2011, primarily due to the growth in revenue, effective cost controls and a lower cost of borrowing. Compared with the same period 2011, net interest expense in the current quarter was down $1 million, primarily due to a reduction in our average interest rate. The annual and fourth quarter effective tax rates in 2012 were 38.5% and 39.16%, respectively. The annual and fourth quarter effective tax rates in 2011 were 38.18% and 37.5%, respectively.
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.
- Real Money + Doug Kass + 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV