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$LUV stated that any opportunities on the capital side would be more along the lines of fleet, in terms of opportunities to continue to renew the fleet. The order book is currently at a very manageable level. The company believes there are opportunities to modernize and invest in the business.
$LUV's unit revenues were up 1.9% in 4Q17 and just under 1% for full year 2017. The company is estimating 1-2% unit revenue growth on strong load factors and bookings for 1Q18 and the goal is to achieve positive unit revenue comparisons again for 2018.
$LUV reported net income of $1.9Bil or $3.18 per share in 4Q17 compared to $522MM or $0.84 per share in 4Q16. 4Q17 net income was positively impacted by a $1.4Bil tax benefit due to tax reform legislation. Total operating revenues grew 3.9% to $5.3Bil, driven largely by passenger revenues of $4.7Bil.
Freight hauling railroad $UNP reported more than 100% surge in 4Q17 net income, driven by the impact of Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Net income was $7.2Bil or $9.25 per share compared to a net income of $1.14Bil or $1.39 per share a year earlier. Revenue rose 5% to $5.45Bil. On an adjusted basis, $UNP earned $1.53 per share, up 10% YoY.
United reported 46% jump in profits to $580MM ($1.99/share) due to strong travel demand in 4Q. Passenger revenue per seat flown in a mile (PRASM) rose modestly to 0.2%, but fuel costs were up 20% vs. 4Q16. For 2018, $UAL expects to increase capacity by 4-6% and to spend between $3.6-3.8Bil. The airline projects 2018 EPS to be between $6.50-8.50.
$JBHT's Intermodal revenue for 4Q17 rose 10% on load growth and rise in rate per load. Dedicated Contract Services revenue grew 20%, on addition of new customer accounts and improved asset utilization. Integrated Capacity Solutions revenue climbed 40% on higher per load and rise in load growth. Truck revenue rose 1% on customer rate per mile rises.
$JBHT reported a jump in 4Q17 earnings driven by decline in income taxes from reasonable estimate of change in future tax rates on deferred tax balances as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act enacted in the quarter. Net income rose to $385.3MM or $3.48 per share from $117.6MM or $1.05 per share last year. Operating revenue grew 16% to $1.99Bil.
United Airlines unveiled its key operating metrics for Dec. 2017. $UAL's traffic increased 2.7% while capacity spiked 3.7% compared to Dec. 2016. However, passenger load factor shrank 0.8 points vs. last year. The company now expects fourth quarter 2017 passenger unit revenues to be about flat vs. 4Q16 due to better yields and demand.
$JBHT sees 4Q17 earnings in the range of $85-90MM, or $0.77-0.82 per share. Operating revenue for the current quarter is expected to be in the range of $1.9-2Bil, compared with $1.72Bil for 4Q16. Operating income is expected to be in the range of $145-155MM.
$CGI completed amendment of its revolving credit facility led by Bank of America. The amendments included financial covenants reset through March 31, 2018, lifting maximum borrowing from about $192MM to $205MM, and lifting maximum outstanding amount from $226.3MM to $230MM.
$RRTS received filing extensions from the NYSE, its asset-based lenders, and its preferred stock holder. This related to Form 10-K/A for 2015, and Form 10-Q/A for quarters ended March 31, 2016, June 30, 2016 and Sept. 30, 2016. This also includes Form 10-K for 2016 and Form 10-Q for quarters ended March 31, 2017, June 30, 2017 and Sept. 30, 2017.
$LSTR's BoD lifted the number of shares of its common stock that the company is authorized to purchase under its stock purchase program to 3MM. This reflects a new authorization to purchase 1.96MM shares in addition to the remaining capacity under the existing authorization to purchase 1.04MM shares.
$SAIA announced Saia LTL Freight has opened its newest terminal in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. This is the sixth facility the company has opened in the Northeast in the last eight months. $SAIA plans on opening an additional four to five terminals in the Northeast in 2018 and is currently in varying stages of planning with respect to those locations.