PHOENIX--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--Knight Transportation, Inc. (NYSE: KNX)(''Knight''), one of North America’s largest and most diversified truckload transportation companies, today provided an update on its guidance for the third and fourth quarters of 2013.
Based on preliminary results, Knight now expects earnings per diluted share will range from:
- $0.18 to $0.20 for its third quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared with its prior estimates of $0.22 to $0.24; and
- $0.20 to $0.23 for its fourth quarter ending December 31, 2013, compared with its prior estimates of $0.22 to $0.25.
A number of factors negatively impacted the third quarter of 2013, which has resulted in expected earnings below original estimates. We experienced lower miles per tractor year over year, despite having 3.6% less trucks in the third quarter of 2013 than in the third quarter of 2012, revenue per mile improvement fell short of our targeted level, and increased driver recruiting, training, and payroll costs.
Soft freight demand, particularly in the first half of the quarter, challenges related to recruiting qualified driving associates, and the new industry-wide regulations governing hours of service that went into effect in July 2013 were among the factors affecting the quarter.
Kevin Knight, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Knight stated, ''In recent weeks, we have seen improvement in driver recruiting, which reduced the number of unseated tractors, and have begun to see pickup in some previously soft freight markets. We believe that our industry-leading operating efficiency positions Knight for continued success, and enables us to capitalize on growth opportunities during these challenging times in our industry.''
Third Quarter 2013 Earnings Conference Call
Knight expects to release its 2013 third quarter earnings on Wednesday, October 23, 2013, after the close of the market. Knight will hold a live conference call with analysts and investors to discuss the earnings release, the results of operations, and other matters shortly after it issues its earnings press release on Wednesday, October 23, 2013, at 4:30 pm EDT. (Please note that, since the call will begin promptly as scheduled, you will need to join a few minutes prior to that time.) Slides to accompany this call will be posted on the company’s website and will be available to download just prior to the scheduled conference call. To view the presentation, please visit http://investor.knighttrans.com/events, ''Third Quarter 2013 Conference Call Presentation.''
The public will be able to listen and participate in the conference telephonically by dialing (855) 733-9163. An audio replay of the conference will be posted on the Company’s website for at least seven (7) days after the meeting (www.knighttrans.com/shareholders/audio).
The Company assumes no responsibility to update any information posted on its web site.
This press release may contain forward-looking statements made by the Company that involve risks, assumptions and uncertainties that are difficult to predict. Investors are directed to the information contained in Item 7A (''Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk'') of Part II of the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K, filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, for a discussion of the risks that may affect the Company’s future operating results. Actual results may differ.
Some statements set forth in this press release, and prior press releases regarding Knight’s proposal to acquire USA Truck and the expected impact of an acquisition of USA Truck on Knight and its financial results and operations, contain forward-looking statements that are subject to change. Statements including words such as ''believe'', ''expect'', or similar words as well as statements in the future tense are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual events or actual future results to differ materially from the expectations set forth in the forward-looking statements. Some of the factors which could cause results to differ materially from the expectations expressed in these forward-looking statements include the following: the possibility that an acquisition of USA Truck by Knight may not be completed; the risk that, if the acquisition is completed, Knight may face difficulty or be unable to enhance the performance of USA Truck’s operations or successfully integrate USA Truck’s operations; and other factors identified from time-to-time in Knight’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. All forward-looking statements in this press release are qualified by these cautionary statements and are made only as of the date of this news release.