J.B. Hunt Quarterly Profit Rises 6.5 Percent to $93.4M

J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. of Lowell reported a 6.5 percent increase in second-quarter profit on Tuesday as increased loads offset driver recruiting issues.

The logistics company (Nasdaq: JBHT) reported second-quarter net earnings of $93.4 million or 79 cents per share, up from $87.7 million or 73 cents per share in the same quarter last year. Revenue was up 12 percent to $1.55 billion from $1.38 billion in the same quarter last year.

Hunt’s intermodal division saw a 9 percent increase in quarterly revenue to $931 million, and its Dedicated Contract Services division had a 15 percent increase to $348 million. The Integrated Capacity Solutions division had a 31 percent increase to $173 million while the trucking division saw its revenue remain flat at $101 million.

Operating income for J.B. Hunt improved 8 percent to $159 million.

"The slowdown in train velocity and the difficult driver recruiting environment has challenged our growth in JBI," said CEO John Roberts III in a news release, referring to the company’s intermodal division. "We are pleased we were able to maintain profitability levels despite these obstacles. The worsening driver supply conditions will continue to be a headwind for DCS and JBT as well. The planned improvement in JBT is ahead of schedule and though there is more to do, we are extremely pleased with the progress thus far.

"While we continue to work to improve customer service and equipment utilization levels to achieve our expected market growth, the second quarter results demonstrate the combined earnings value of our four diversified, yet integrated, business units," he said.