Trucking and logistics provider USA Truck saw its fourth quarter losses widen compared to a year ago but reduced it during 2013 compared to the year before.
It incurred a net loss of $4.6 million or 45 cents per share for the final quarter of last year, compared to a net loss of $3.2 million or 31 cents per share a year earlier. Revenue during the period increased $141.6 million from $134.8 million.
Asset-based trucking revenue, not including fuel surcharge, increased 6.9% to $83.3 million, while non-asset based Strategic Capacity Solutions revenue rose 4.1% to $30.4 million during the same time.
For all of 2013 USA incurred a net loss of $9.1 million or 88 cents per share, compared to a net loss of $17.7 million or $1.71 per share, for 2012. Revenue last year was $555 million compared to $512.4 a year earlier.
Asset-based Trucking revenue, not including fuel surcharge, increased 9.6% to $326.3 million, while non-asset based Strategic Capacity Solutions revenue rose 5.8% to $117.6 million during the same period.
"The fourth quarter capped a turning point year for USA Truck, with improvements in virtually every area of our business," said President and CEO John Simone. "Our results reflect the growing positive momentum of our strategic plan, which focuses on three critical areas – operational execution, profitable revenue growth and cost effectiveness.”
Throughout 2013, USA's truck segment made steady progress, according to Simone, improving its adjusted operating ratio by 503 basis points quarter over quarter and by 644 basis points for the full year. “The fourth quarter of 2013 was our fifth consecutive quarter of improvement,” he said. “For both the quarter and the year, we extended our length of haul while simultaneously increasing our pricing, and we added drivers while simultaneously increasing productivity per driver.”
"Our asset-light Strategic Capacity Solutions business also turned in another strong quarter, growing operating income by 74.4% year over year on base revenue growth of 4.1%,” Simone said. “SCS, which accounted for $30.4 million, or 26.7%, of our consolidated base revenue, actually reduced its year-over-year operating expenses by 4%, leading to a 390 basis-point improvement in operating margin."
USA Truck and its financial performance was one of the targets of rival Knight Transportation in a bid started last year to increase its share in the Arkansas-based operation, however the two sides recently reached a settlement over the proposed purchase.
Further details on USA Truck's financial performance are on its website.