United Parcel Service
delivered fourth-quarter earnings that surpassed analysts' slightly lowered expectations, as strong growth in the company's international operations and logistics business helped prop up the bottom line.
The company also projected 8% to 10% revenue growth in the midst of an "expected slowing" in the first half of 2001.
The express carrier and delivery package firm said fourth-quarter earnings totaled $724 million, or 63 cents a share, compared with $661 million, or 56 cents a share, a year ago. According to a poll by
First Call/Thomson Financial
, 19 analysts expected earnings of 61 cents a share.
Revenue for the quarter was $7.9 billion, up 6.1% from $7.4 billion last year. Revenue at the company's domestic package operations rose 4.4% to $6.3 billion, and revenue for international package operations rose 6.2% to $1.1 billion.
For 2001, UPS projected earnings per share growth of 9% to 11%. Analysts on average are calling for the company to earn $2.63 a share in 2001, compared with earnings of $2.38 a share in 2000. Analysts expect 2001 revenue of $32.3 billion, up from $29.77 billion this year.
Shares of UPS recently gained 46 cents, or 0.8%, to $61.26 in morning trading on the Big Board.