Landstar System Inc. and Werner Enterprises Inc., two of the largest truckload carriers, announced fourth-quarter earnings increases of 53% and 48%, respectively, to continue the positive trend in the sector.
Werner, based in Omaha, Nebraska, reported net income of $32.7 million, or 45 cents per share, from $22.2 million, or 30 cents. Revenue rose 7% to $553.2 million.
Earnings climbed at Landstar, in Jacksonville, Florida, to $38.5 million, or 86 cents, excluding an asset-sale gain.
Year-earlier earnings were $59.6 million, excluding the sale of a supply chain unit to XPO Logistics and $25.2 million including the gain. The 2013 period earnings per share were $1.30 with the gain included and 55 cents without it.
“An improving economy combined with constrained truck capacity is contributing to improved freight demand,” Werner’s earnings announcement said. Its revenue per tractor per week rose 8.8% in the quarter.
Landstar’s revenue rose 25% to $863.2 million on the strength of 14% higher revenue per load and 11% more shipments moved. The trends were a reflection of better results at both the van and flatbed units that generated 95% of revenue.
Both companies said they expected trends in the fourth quarter to continue this year.
Landstar is No. 10 on the Transport Topics Top 100 list of the largest U.S. and Canadian for-hire carriers, and Werner is No. 14.