The nation’s largest truckload carrier, Knight-Swift Transportation (NYSE: KNX), reported Wednesday fourth-quarter adjusted earnings per share of 94 cents, ahead of the consensus estimate of 91 cents and well ahead of the year-ago result of 55 cents.
The Phoenix-based company reported continued improvement in its truckload segment with revenue, excluding fuel, up 9% year-over-year and adjusted operating income climbing 64%. Revenue per tractor increased 11% as rate per loaded mile, excluding fuel, climbed 14% to $2.64.
The TL segment posted an adjusted operating ratio of 79.3%, 690 basis points better year-over-year.
The company’s brokerage segment posted revenue growth of 35% year-over-year with gross margins increasing 90 bps to 16.4%. Revenue per load increased 51% to $2,155. Loads were down 9%.
Intermodal saw steady top-line results with loads and revenue per load improving modestly. The division’s OR improved 470 bps to 94.8%.
2021 adjusted earnings per share guidance remained unchanged at $3.20 to $3.40, bracketing consensus of $3.36.
Shares were down nearly 4% in early trading Wednesday compared to the S&P 500, which was off 1.5%.