Thursday, February 3, 2011

Rate Hikes Help Less Than Truckload Freight Carrier In Bad Times

ABF Posts Losses - But Heads In the Right Direction
Shipping News Feature

US – Arkansas best subsidiary ABF Freight System have posted full year figures which are a marked improvement on the near $100 million loss they recorded a year earlier. Revenues for the less than truckload (LTL) cargo consolidator were up 10.5% to over $1.5 billion and the company almost halved the year on year loss recording a new annual deficit of $58 million.

Although any loss is not to be greeted over optimistically the fourth quarter figures for the company show marked improvements with the loss for the last three months at under $7.5 million and revenue for the period up over 18%. The company says the ability to raise freight rates has been the major factor coupled with a 15% rise in tonnage levels from September resulting in a loss which is only 23% of 2009’s equivalent figure.

ABF must be anxious to hear the result of their case against YRC and the Teamsters which is due to be heard in the Federal Appeal Court in April as we reported yesterday. Employment costs are such a major factor for any road haulage operator and the company feels the unions decision to support YRC is mitigating against their own ability to keep costs to a competitive level and giving the Kentucky giant an unfair advantage.