Matson hit by lower container volumes
Alexander & Baldwin Inc., parent of Matson Navigation reported second quarter net profit of $12.6 million, 57 percent less than it earned the same prior year period.
Revenue was $355.1 million, 23 percent less than the second quarter of 2008.
'A&B's second quarter 2009 performance improved considerably from the first quarter of the year — principally as a result of Matson's return to profitability, and, to a lesser extent, increased real estate sales,' said W. Allen Doane, chairman and chief executive officer. 'These improvements were partially offset, however, by poor performance in our agribusiness division, as well as the pervasive impacts of the national and global recession.”
Matson Navigation had operating profit of $21.1 million in the quarter, 44 percent less than the same period the prior year. Revenue was $218.5 million, 19 percent less than the in the second quarter of 2008.
Container traffic to and from Hawaii was down 12 percent from the same 2008 period while automobile shipments were up 15 percent. China containers were down 13 percent and Guam container traffic was flat.
The company’s Matson Integrated Logistics (MIL) business saw revenue drop 30 percent to $80.3 million, with the business hit by lower volumes and lower rates, including lower fuel charges.
'While our cost alignment actions have been effective, we expect choppy earnings results for the remainder of 2009,” Doane said. “Our performance in the balance of the year will be restrained by the impact of previously reported non-cash increases in pension expense, ongoing volume pressure at Matson and MIL, low shipping rates in the transpacific trade lane and suppressed real estate markets. Our heavy losses in agribusiness have compelled a comprehensive evaluation of the company's sugar operation, which is expected to be completed by year-end.'