August 3, 2010 / 1:31 PM / 8 years ago

U.S. trucker YRC posts smaller loss but shares fall

OVERLAND PARK, Kansas (Reuters) - Troubled U.S. trucker YRC Worldwide Inc (YRCW.O) reported a narrower second-quarter loss and said “significant operating momentum” would drive improvements through the rest of the year.

Shares of YRC dropped as much as 26 percent, however, as the carrier, which narrowly averted bankruptcy last December, said on Tuesday it still faced many challenges.

Analysts said profit-taking and general volatility associated with the company were factors in the price pressure. But earnings generally were in line with market forecasts, even beating average expectations.

YRC said it lost $9.5 million, or 1 cent a share, in the second quarter, compared with a net loss of $309 million, or $5.20 per share, a year earlier.

Revenue fell 8.7 percent to $1.12 billion as the pace of daily shipments fell year over year.

Analysts on average were expecting a loss of 8 cents a share on revenue of $1.2 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Overland Park, Kansas-based YRC said it was seeing sequential increases in business volumes, positioning it for further growth in the third quarter, but noted it still faced many uncertainties and would continue to trim costs and sell assets.

Many customers fled YRC last year as it struggled to stay afloat amid stiff competition and a bloated debt load.

YRC said revenue per shipment grew even as daily shipments fell 18.6 percent in the second quarter from the year-ago period for its national business, and dropped 3.1 percent for its regional business.

    Compared with the 2010 first quarter, shipments per day are increasing, by 8 percent for national and 13.8 percent for regional, with revenue per shipment up 0.9 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively.

    “With the significant operating momentum we achieved throughout the second quarter and experienced in July, the company is positioned for further growth,” YRC Chairman Bill Zollars said in a statement.

    Zollars said though capacity and volume were about balanced, the company was continuing to “work on costs.”

    YRC also said that as part of its restructuring, it expects a second closing of its sale of an additional $20.2 million of 6 percent senior convertible notes to be completed later on Tuesday. Net proceeds from the sale will be used to fund the repurchase of any of the roughly $20 million of outstanding 5 percent notes tied to an August 9 put option.

    The company is continuing to negotiate with its union over a schedule for resumption of deferred pension contributions.

    YRC shares fell as low as 30 cents before trading down 18 percent at 37 cents on Nasdaq at mid-afternoon. The stock has traded as high as $6.18 in the past 12 months.

    Reporting by Carey Gillam; Editing by John Wallace, Matthew Lewis and Richard Chang

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