The last few years have been challenging for the global shipping industry. The industry's downturn began following the financial crisis of 2009 and the subsequent global recession. The only exception, though, was the LNG tanker market, which benefited from growing LNG demand in Asia.
However, just as the wider shipping industry is seeing a recovery, the LNG tanker market has entered a downturn. Indeed, LNG charter rates have more than halved compared to last year. Despite this scenario, Teekay LNG Partners L.P. (NYSE: TGP ) is an attractive proposition as the partnership is largely protected from short-term volatility in LNG freight rates and is well positioned to capitalize on growth in the LNG market in the long term.
Short-term LNG freight rates down sharply
The global recession resulted in the shipping industry entering a prolonged downturn. Between 2007 and 2009, ship owners in the crude oil, oil products, and dry freight market ordered new vessels. However, just as the capacity increased, the global economy entered a recession. Not surprisingly, freight rates fell sharply.
Best Dow Dividend Stocks To Buy Right Now: Werner Enterprises Inc (WERN)
Werner Enterprises, Inc., incorporated on September 14, 1982, is a transportation and logistics company engaged primarily in hauling truckload shipments of general commodities in both interstate and intrastate commerce. The Company also provides logistics services through its value added services (VAS) division. As of the year ended December 31, 2012, the Company had a fleet of 7,150 trucks, of which 6,505 were Company-operated and 645 were owned and operated by independent contractors. The Company operates in two segments: Truckload Transportation Services (Truckload) and VAS.
The Company's Truckload segment consists of the One-Way Truckload and Specialized Services units. One-Way Truckload includes the operating fleets: the regional short-haul (Regional) fleet transports a variety of consumer nondurable products and other commodities in truckload quantities within geographic regions across the United States using dry van trailers; the medium-to-long-haul van (Van) fleet provides comparable truckload van service over irregular routes, and the expedited (Expedited) fleet provides time-sensitive truckload services utilizing driver teams.
Specialized Services provides truckload services dedicated to a specific customer, generally for a retail distribution center or manufacturing facility, including services for products requiring specialized trailers such as flatbed or temperature-controlled trailers. The Company's Truckload fleets operate throughout the 48 contiguous United States, both common and contract, granted by the United States Department of Transportation (DOT). The Company also has authority to operate in several provinces of Canada and to provide through-trailer service into and out of Mexico. The principal types of freight the Company transports include retail store merchandise, consumer products, grocery products and manufactured products. The Company focuses on transporting consumer nondurable products that generally ship.
The Company's VAS segment is a non-asset-based transportation and logistics provider. VAS is consists of four operating units that provide non-trucking services to the Company's customers: truck brokerage (Brokerage) uses contracted carriers to complete customer shipments; freight management (Freight Management) offers a range of single-source logistics management services and solutions; the intermodal (Intermodal) unit offers rail transportation through alliances with rail and drayage providers as an alternative to truck transportation, and Werner Global Logistics international (WGL) provides complete management of global shipments from origin to destination using a combination of air, ocean, truck and rail transportation modes. The Company's Brokerage unit had transportation services contracts with approximately 9,400 carriers as of December 31, 2012.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Seth Jayson]
Werner Enterprises (Nasdaq: WERN ) reported earnings on July 22. Here are the numbers you need to know.
The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended June 30 (Q2), Werner Enterprises missed estimates on revenues and missed estimates on earnings per share.
Top 5 Freight Companies To Invest In 2014: Universal Truckload Services Inc (UACL)
Universal Truckload Services, Inc., incorporated on December 11, 2001, is engaged in providing transportation services to shippers throughout the United States and in the Canadian provinces of Ontario and Quebec. The Company�� over-the-road trucking services include both flatbed and dry van operations and it provides rail-truck and steamship-truck intermodal support services. It also offers truck brokerage services, as well as full service international freight forwarding and customs house brokerage services. The Company provides truckload transportation and related services for a range of general commodities over irregular routes using dry and specialty vans and un-sided trailers, including flatbed, drop deck, and specialty. In December 2013, the Company announced that it has completed acquisition of Westport Axle Corporation.
The Company primarily operates through a contractor network of agents and owner-operators who provide the Company with approximately 3,100 tractors and approximately 3,000 trailers. At December 31, 2011, the Company had approximately 565 agents. The Company conducts its operations through its wholly owned operating subsidiaries under the brand names, such as Universal Am-Can, Ltd., Mason & Dixon Lines, Inc., Louisiana Transportation Inc., Mason Dixon Intermodal, Inc., Economy Transport, Inc., Great American Lines, Inc., Universal Logistics Solutions, Inc., Universal Logistics Solutions International, Inc. and Cavalry Transportation, LLC.
The Company provides services in three categories, such as truckload services, brokerage services and intermodal support services. The Company transports a range of general commodities, including machinery, building materials, paper, food, consumer goods, automotive parts, furniture, steel and other metals. During the year ended December 31, 2011, its truckload operations represented 60.5%, of its operating revenues.
The Company provides primarily broker freight to third-party transportation providers th! rough its agent network at times when the Company generates more freight business than it can service with its available owner-operators. The Company offers full service international freight forwarding and customs house brokerage services, as well as third-party logistic services. During 2011, its brokerage services represented 24.8%, of its operating revenues. Its intermodal support services are primarily short-to-medium distance delivery of rail and steamship containers between the railhead or port and the customer and drayage services. During 2011, its intermodal support services represented 14.7% of its operating revenues.
The Company�� agents provide the primary interaction with its shippers. They generate freight shipments and also provide terminal and dispatch services for the owner-operators and are an essential source for recruitment of new owner-operators. The agents use a company-provided software program to list available freight procured by the agent, dispatch owner-operators to haul the freight and provide all administrative information necessary for it to establish the credit arrangements for each shipper. The owner-operators are individuals who own, operate and maintain one or more tractors that they either provide drivers, or drive themselves. The Company�� owner-operators provide it with approximately 3,100 tractors. Owner-operators also may own trailers that they provide the Company in addition to their tractor and driving services. As of December 31, 2011, its owner-operators provided approximately 3,000 trailers, which represent over 50% of the trailers the Company use in its business.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Sean Williams]
What: Shares of Universal Truckload Services (NASDAQ: UACL ) , a North American provider of trucking and logistics solutions, jumped as much as 12% after receiving an upgrade from BB&T�Capital Markets.
- [By Seth Jayson]
Calling all cash flows
When you are trying to buy the market's best stocks, it's worth checking up on your companies' free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That's what we do with this series. Today, we're checking in on Universal Truckload Services (Nasdaq: UACL ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.
Top 5 Freight Companies To Invest In 2014: Forward Air Corp (FWRD)
Forward Air Corporation operates in two segments: Forward Air, Inc. (Forward Air) and Forward Air Solutions, Inc. (FASI). Through the Company's Forward Air segment, it is a provider of time-definite surface transportation and related logistics services to the North American deferred air freight market. It offers its customers local pick-up and delivery (Forward Air Complete) and scheduled surface transportation of cargo. It transports cargo that must be delivered at a specific time but is less time-sensitive than traditional air freight. As of December 31, 2011, it operated its Forward Air segment through a network of terminals located on or near airports in 85 cities in the United States and Canada, including a central sorting facility in Columbus, Ohio and 12 regional hubs serving key markets. It also offers its customers an array of logistics and other services including expedited full truckload (TLX); dedicated fleets; warehousing; customs brokerage; and shipment consolidation, deconsolidation and handling. During the year ended December 31, 2011, approximately 23.9% of the freight it handled was for overnight delivery, approximately 61.3% was for delivery within two to three days and the balance was for delivery in four or more days. Through its FASI segment, it provides pool distribution services throughout the Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, Midwest and Southwest continental United States. Pool distribution involves managing high-frequency, last mile handling and distribution of time-sensitive product to destinations in geographic regions. In March 2013, it acquired Total Quality, Inc. In February 2014, Forward Air Corporation acquired Central States Trucking Co. and Central States Logistics, Inc. from Central States Inc.
The Company receives freight from air freight forwarders, integrated air cargo carriers and passenger and cargo airlines at its terminals, which are located on or near airports in the United States and Canada. It also picks up freight from custo! mers at designated locations via our Forward Air Complete service. It transports these shipments by truck through its network to its terminals nearest the destinations of the shipments. It operates scheduled service to and from each of its terminals through its Columbus, Ohio central sorting facility or through one of its 12 regional hubs. It also operates scheduled shuttle service directly between terminals where the volume of freight warrants bypassing the Columbus, Ohio central sorting facility or a regional hub. When a shipment arrives at its terminal nearest its destination, the customer arranges for the shipment to be picked up and delivered to its final destination, or it, in the alternative, through its Forward Air Complete service, deliver the freight for the customer to its final destination. Its airport-to-airport network consists of terminals located in the 85 cities. As of December 31, 2011, independent agents and FASI operate 18 and two of its Forward Air locations.
The Company operates direct terminal-to-terminal services and regional overnight service between terminals where justified by freight volumes. It provides regional overnight service to the markets within its network. Direct shipments also reduce the likelihood of damage because of reduced handling and sorting of the freight. It operates regional hubs in Atlanta, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Denver, Kansas City, Los Angeles, New Orleans, Newark, Newburgh, Orlando, and Sacramento. During 2011, the average weekly volume of freight moving through its network was approximately 34.0 million pounds per week. During 2011, its average shipment weighed approximately 717 pounds and shipment sizes ranged from small boxes weighing only a few pounds to large shipments of several thousand pounds.
The Company�� logistics and other services allow customers to access services from a single source: expedited full truckload (TLX); dedicated fleets; customs brokerage, such as assistance with the United States C! ustoms an! d Border Protection (U.S. Customs) procedures for both import and export shipments; warehousing, dock and office space; drayage and intermodal; hotshot or ad-hoc ultra expedited services, and shipment consolidation and handling, such as shipment build-up and break-down and reconsolidation of air or ocean pallets or containers.
Forward Air Solutions
Through the Company�� FASI segment, it provides pool distribution services through a network of terminals and service locations in 19 cities throughout the Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, Midwest and Southwest continental United States. Pool distribution involves managing high-frequency handling and distribution of time-sensitive product to destinations in specific geographic regions. Its customers for this product are regional and nationwide distributors and retailers, such as mall, strip mall and outlet-based retail chains. Its pool distribution network consists of terminals and service locations in the 19 cities. Its Forward Air wholesale customer base is comprised of freight forwarders, integrated air cargo carriers and passenger and cargo airlines. Its air freight forwarder customers vary in size from independent, single facility companies to international logistics companies, such as SEKO Worldwide, AIT Worldwide Logistics, Expeditors International of Washington, Associated Global, UPS Supply Chain Solutions and Pilot Air Freight. Its FASI pool distribution customers are consisted of national and regional retailers and distributors, such as The Limited, The Marmaxx Group, The GAP, and Aeropostale. The Company also participates in air cargo and retail trade shows and advertise its services through direct mail programs and through the Internet via www.forwardair.com and www.forwardairsolutions.com.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Seth Jayson]
Calling all cash flows
When you are trying to buy the market's best stocks, it's worth checking up on your companies' free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That's what we do with this series. Today, we're checking in on Forward Air (Nasdaq: FWRD ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.
Top 5 Freight Companies To Invest In 2014: Knight Transportation Inc (KNX)
Knight Transportation, Inc. (Knight), incorporated on August 31, 1989, is a provider of multiple truckload transportation services, which generally involve the movement of full trailer or container loads of freight from origin to destination for a single customer. The Company is a provider of multiple truckload transportation services with a nationwide network of service centers through which it operates one of the tractor fleets. In addition to its own fleet, the Company also partners with third-party equipment providers to provide truckload capacity and a broad range of solutions to truckload shippers. The Company has five operating segments comprised of three asset-based operating segments: dry van truckload, temperature-controlled truckload and port services and two non-asset-based operating segments brokerage and intermodal services. Through its asset-based and non-asset-based capabilities the Company is able to transport, or can arrange for the transportation of, general commodities for customers throughout the United States and parts of Canada and Mexico.
The Company's asset-based businesses generally include dry van truckload, refrigerated truckload, dedicated truckload, and drayage services. Its non-asset-based services generally include rail intermodal and truckload brokerage services. However, within its asset-based services, the use of independent contractors to provide tractors lowers the capital investment in its dry van and refrigerated operations. In addition, drayage operations generally involve less expensive tractors with longer lives and do not require a investment in trailering equipment. As of December 31, 2012, it operated 3,627 company-owned tractors with an average age of 1.9 years. It also had under contract 507 tractors owned and operated by independent contractors. Its trailer fleet consisted of 9,564 53-foot long trailers with an average age of 5.5 years and includes 1,092 temperature-controlled trailers.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Sean Williams]
Swift Transportation (NYSE: SWFT ) , for example, delivered a 4% increase in revenue this past quarter in spite of having fewer trucks in service. The company was able to realize better utilization of its existing fleet and actually saw fuel prices fall from the previous year. The results were even more robust for Knight Transportation (NYSE: KNX ) , whose shareholders saw revenue rise by 7% as the company grew from the year-ago quarter for the 14th straight time and delivered growth from each of its business segments.
- [By Victor Nguyen]
A report released Thursday morning, Citigroup analyst Christian Wetherbee upgrades Knight Transportation (NYSE: KNX) to BUY from NEUTRAL, increasing price target from $17 to $22.
- [By Seth Jayson]
Calling all cash flows
When you are trying to buy the market's best stocks, it's worth checking up on your companies' free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That's what we do with this series. Today, we're checking in on Knight Transportation (NYSE: KNX ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.