Old Dominion Freight Line (ODFL - Free Report) delivered fourth-quarter 2019 earnings of $1.64 per share, surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.58. Moreover, the bottom line improved 23.3% year over year. Meanwhile, quarterly revenues of $991 million fell short of the consensus mark of $998 million but increased 7.1% on a year-over-year basis. Top-line growth was primarily driven by a 9.6% increase in less-than-truckload (LTL) revenue per hundredweight.
In the quarter under review, LTL revenue per hundredweight was up 9.6% excluding fuel surcharges. Also, LTL shipments inched up 1.1%. However, LTL weight per shipment declined 4%.Additionally, operating ratio (operating expenses as a percentage of revenues) improved 190 basis points (bps) to 82% on the back of greater efficiencies.
Old Dominion, carrying a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold), exited the first quarter with cash and cash equivalents of $280.6million. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Capital expenditures in the quarter totaled $70.7 million. The company expects capital expenditures to be $480 million in 2019 (previous estimate was $490 million). Of the total amount, $220 million is anticipated to be spent on real estate and service center expansion while approximately $165 million and $95 million are estimated to be spent on tractors and trailers, and technology and other assets, respectively.
During the quarter, the company rewarded its shareholders with $44.4 million through $13.8 million in dividends and $30.6 million in buybacks.
Investors interested in the broader Transportation sector are keenly awaiting first-quarter earnings reports from key players, such as Expeditors International of Washington, Inc. (EXPD - Free Report) , Air Lease Corporation (AL - Free Report) and Hertz Global Holdings, Inc (HTZ - Free Report) . While Hertz Global will report first-quarter earnings on May 6, Expeditors and Air Lease will announce the same on May 7 and May 9, respectively.
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