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ArcBest (ARCB) to Report Q4 Earnings: A Beat in the Offing?

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ArcBest Corporation (ARCB - Free Report) is scheduled to report fourth-quarter 2021 earnings on Feb 1, 2022, before market open. 

ARCB has a stellar surprise record, with earnings having surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in each of the last four quarters, the average being 27.4%.

ArcBest Corporation Price and EPS Surprise

ArcBest Corporation Price and EPS Surprise

ArcBest Corporation price-eps-surprise | ArcBest Corporation Quote

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for fourth-quarter earnings has been revised 0.9% upward to $2.27 in the past 60 days.

Against this backdrop, let’s take a look at the factors that might have shaped up ARCB’s December-quarter performance.

We expect ArcBest’s performance in the December quarter to have been aided by improving freight conditions in the United States. Rising freight demand is expected to have driven revenues in its asset-based business, accounting for the bulk of the top line. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for fourth-quarter revenues from asset-based business is currently pegged at $672 million, indicating 21.3% growth from the figure reported in fourth-quarter 2020.

Total billed revenue per hundredweight on asset-based shipments is likely to have increased on ArcBest’s asset-based pricing initiatives. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the metric (excluding fuel surcharges) suggests an increase of 19.9% from the fourth-quarter 2020 reported value.

However, supply-chain disruptions might have dented the quarterly performance.

What Does the Zacks Model Unveil?

The proven Zacks model predicts a bottom-line outperformance for ArcBest this time around. The combination of a positive  Earnings ESP  and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), 2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold) increases the odds of an earnings surprise, which is the case here. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Earnings ESP: ArcBest has an Earnings ESP of +2.56% as the Most Accurate Estimate is currently pegged at $2.27, 6 cents above the Zacks Consensus Estimate. You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they’re reported with our  Earnings ESP Filter.

Zacks Rank: ArcBest carries a Zacks Rank #2, currently.

Highlights of Q3 Earnings

ArcBest’s earnings (excluding 21 cents from non-recurring items) of $2.59 per share surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.47. Operating revenues of $1016.7 million surpassed the consensus mark of $1005.6 million and increased 27.9% on a year-over-year basis.

Other Stocks to Consider

Investors interested in the broader Transportation sector may also consider C.H. Robinson Worldwide (CHRW - Free Report) , United Parcel Service (UPS - Free Report) and Expeditors International of Washington ((EXPD - Free Report) ), as these stocks too possess the right combination of elements to beat on earnings this reporting cycle.

C.H. Robinson currently has an Earnings ESP of +4.79% and a Zacks Rank #3. CHRW will report fourth-quarter 2021 results on Feb 2.

Favorable pricing and higher volumes owing to improved freight market conditions are expected to have aided C.H. Robinson’s fourth-quarter performance.

UPS has an Earnings ESP of +1.20% and a Zacks Rank of 3 at present. UPS is set to release fourth-quarter results on Feb 1.

Strong package delivery demand is expected to have aided UPS’ fourth-quarter performance. Strong demand during the holiday season is anticipated to have driven its top line.

Expeditors has an Earnings ESP of +2.97% and is Zacks #1 Ranked, presently. EXPD will release fourth-quarter 2021 results on Feb 22.

Upbeat airfreight revenues bolster Expeditors. Like the first three quarters of 2021, we expect airfreight revenues to aid EXPD’s fourth-quarter 2021 results.

Stay on top of upcoming earnings announcements with the Zacks Earnings Calendar.