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Triton's (TRTN) Q4 Earnings Surpass Estimates, Surge Y/Y

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Triton International Limited’s (TRTN - Free Report) fourth-quarter 2020 earnings of $1.70 per share surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.42. Moreover, the bottom line surged 58.9% year over year owing to strong leasing demand and higher sale prices for used containers. Post the coronavirus-induced slump, the company saw a strong rebound in operations in the second half of 2020 with global containerized trade volumes “well above pre-pandemic levels”. This surge in trade volumes was due to easing coronavirus-led restrictions in the United States and Europe, and a favorable shift in consumer spending.

Total leasing revenues of $337.3 million missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $350.5 million but inched up 1.8% year over year with 2.6% rise in revenues from operating leases. Equipment trading revenues of $27.40 million climbed 59.7% from the year-ago quarter’s reported figure. Trading margin came in at $6.98 million compared with $2.27 million in the prior-year quarter.

The company generated a return on equity of 22.9% in the reported quarter compared with 14.6% in the year-ago quarter. Total operating expenses dipped approximately 2% to $172.32 million.

This Zacks Rank #4 (Sell) company exited the fourth quarter with average utilization of 98.1%, up 200 basis points sequentially.

You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 (Strong Buy) Rank stocks here.

The company repurchased 1.4 million shares during the fourth quarter. For the full year, it repurchased 5.1 million shares. Since the inception of the share-buyback plan cleared in August 2018, the company has bought back more than 13.9 million shares.

Dividend Update

Triton's board approved a quarterly dividend of 57 cents per share, payable to shareholders on Mar 26, of record as of Mar 12.

Outlook

Triton anticipates the first quarter of 2021 to benefit from “near-maximum utilization and a large number of new containers going on-hire as they are produced”. However, fewer revenue days and reduction in the number of used container disposals are expected to hurt the current quarter’s performance. For the first quarter, the company estimates adjusted earnings per share to be either flat or increase slightly from the fourth quarter of 2020.
 
Anticipating the surge in container demand to continue, Triton expects adjusted earnings per share to be much higher in 2021 than that in 2020.

Sectorial Snapshot

Let’s take a look at some of the other recently released earnings reports from companies within the Zacks Transportation sector.

United Airlines (UAL - Free Report) , carrying a Zacks Rank #4, incurred a loss (excluding 6 cents from non-recurring items) of $7 per share in the fourth quarter of 2020, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of $6.56. Meanwhile, operating revenues of $3,412 million lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3,420.4 million.

J.B. Hunt Transport Services (JBHT - Free Report) , carrying a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold), reported earnings of $1.44 per share, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.27. Total operating revenues of $2,737.7 million also surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2,514.3 million.

Delta Air Lines (DAL - Free Report) , carrying a Zacks Rank #3, incurred a loss (excluding $1.34 from non-recurring items) of $2.53 per share in the fourth quarter of 2020, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of $2.43. Total revenues of $3,973 million topped the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3,754.5 million.

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