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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: ArcBest Corp, KnightSwift Transportation, Landstar System, P.A.M. Transportation Services and Forward Air Corp

By Zacks Investment ResearchStock MarketsNov 17, 2020 09:58PM ET
www.investing.com/analysis/the-zacks-analyst-blog-highlights-arcbest-corp-knightswift-transportation-landstar-system-pam-transportation-services-and-forward-air-corp-200545057
The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: ArcBest Corp, KnightSwift Transportation, Landstar System, P.A.M. Transportation Services and Forward Air Corp
By Zacks Investment Research   |  Nov 17, 2020 09:58PM ET
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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – November 18, 2020 – Zacks.com announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include: ArcBest (NASDAQ:ARCB) Corp. ARCB, KnightSwift Transportation Holdings Inc. KNX, Landstar System (NASDAQ:LSTR), Inc. LSTR, P.A.M. Transportation Services (NASDAQ:PTSI), Inc. PTSI and Forward Air (NASDAQ:FWRD) Corp. FWRD.

Here are highlights from Tuesday’s Analyst Blog:

Trucking Stocks Are Still Hot: Grab These 5 Today

The main points highlighted in my last commentary on the trucking market generally hold true even today-

First, goods consumption remains higher than services consumption even with more services coming back now. This has been a positive for trucking companies since most goods consumed have been on a truck at some point in time. Real GDP increased 33.1% in the third quarter, up from the 31.4% decline in the second, according to initial estimates from the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). Reading these two together, the increase in goods sales is apparent.

Second, we continue to buy more stuff online than we do at stores. This increases trucking opportunities. And while the Commerce Department hasn’t released ecommerce data for the third quarter, the monthly sales data released on Oct 16 shows a positive trend. Total sales increased over 1% in July, dipped close to 0.5% in August before climbing to around 2% in September.

Moreover, total sales for the July 2020 through September 2020 period were up 3.6% (± 0.5%) from the same period a year ago. eMarketer estimates that the strength in ecommerce will offset the 3.2% decline in brick-and-mortar spending this year.

Third, stimulus money has helped drive sales.

And fourth, demand hasn’t been even across industries and all industries haven’t been equally impacted by the pandemic. So supply chain issues have pushed up spot rates. This again impacts contract rates, which are typically influenced by the spot rate. Contracts make up 80-85% of total trucking orders but they aren’t intended to lock in rates as in other industries. Rather they lock in the load, i.e. a certain company uses a contract to ensure regular delivery of what it produces.

Fast moving consumer goods, furniture, vehicles, food and beverages have naturally eclipsed things like apparel and industrial/manufacturing items in the last few months. Many durable goods were imported, so transporting those to warehouses generated some of the extra demand for trucking.

With spending patterns being more conservative this year than most, the holiday season is expected to have started earlier. That means things like apparel, cosmetics, toys and such things are on the road now. The market should soften slightly in the final quarter of the year as holiday demand tapers off.

Let’s take a look at the numbers-

The DAT October Truckload Volume Index, which measures dry van, reefer and flatbed loads moved by truckload carriers, is up 3.8% from September and 8.7% from October 2019.

The index is a function of load-to-truck ratio (the number of loads available per available truck or LTR) and rates-

Dry Van: LTR was 4.3 in October, down 21.8% from September’s historic highs but more than double the ratio in October 2019. The spot van rate was $2.40 per mile, up 3 cents month over month and up 60 cents from October 2019.

Reefer: LTR was 8.7 in October, down 10.3% from September. The spot reefer rate was $2.59 per mile, up 2 cents from September and up 48 cents from last year.

Flatbed: LTR was 37.1 in October, down 7.9% from September, despite a 1.6% increase in volume, indicating capacity adds. The spot flatbed rate was $2.45 per mile, up 4 cents from September and 28 cents from October 2019.

So it’s apparent that there has been some easing in load rates since September highs. But because capacity is still much lower than demand, trucking backlogs and pricing continue to increase.

Given the opportunity, trucking stocks continue to look attractive. Here are a few you could add to your portfolio-

ArcBest Corp.

Factors to consider-

Zacks Rank #1

Value Score A

Growth Score B

Momentum Score A

2020 revenue and EPS expected to grow -2.4% and 5.9%, respectively.

2021 revenue and EPS expected to grow 7.8% and 14.6%, respectively.

2020 estimate up 78 cents (34.4%) and 2021 estimate up 67 cents (23.8%) in the last 30 days.

Valuation: Forward P/E of 11.12X is below the median value of 11.34X. So valuation is attractive.

KnightSwift Transportation Holdings

Factors to consider-

Zacks Rank #1

Value Score A

2020 revenue and EPS expected to grow -3.6% and 24.9%, respectively.

2021 revenue and EPS expected to grow 8.8% and 22.5%, respectively.

2020 estimate up 39 cents (16.8%) and 2021 estimate up 54 cents (19.4%) in the last 30 days.

Valuation: Forward P/E of 12.87X is below the median value of 17.65X. So valuation is attractive.

Landstar System

Factors to consider-

Zacks Rank #2

Value Score B

2020 revenue and EPS expected to grow -1.9% and -13.5%, respectively.

2021 revenue and EPS expected to grow 9.4% and 24.9%, respectively (both numbers well above 2019 level).

2020 estimate up 56 cents (12.8%) and 2021 estimate up 69 cents (12.6%) in the last 30 days.

Valuation: Forward P/E of 21.85X is at the median value of 21.85X. So valuation is relatively attractive.

P.A.M. Transportation Services

Factors to consider-

Zacks Rank #1

Value Score A

Growth Score B

Momentum Score B

2020 revenue and EPS expected to grow -8.8% and -44.6%, respectively.

2021 revenue and EPS expected to grow 12.6% and 90.9%, respectively (both numbers above 2019 level).

2020 estimate up 69 cents (45.4%) and 2021 estimate up $1.06 (33.5%) in the last 30 days.

Valuation: Forward P/E of 12.05X is closer to the median value of 11.93X than the annual high of 17.42X. So valuation is relatively attractive.

Forward Air Corp.

Factors to consider-

Zacks Rank #2

Value Score B

2020 revenue and EPS expected to grow -9.2% and -31.9%, respectively.

2021 revenue and EPS expected to grow 8.1% and 39.3%, respectively (both numbers below 2019 level).

2020 estimate up 37 cents (21.8%) and 2021 estimate up 24 cents (9.1%) in the last 30 days.

Valuation: Forward P/E of 26.74X is between the median value of 23.65X and the annual high of 28.05X. So there is scope for upside.

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Media Contact

Zacks Investment Research

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Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Inherent in any investment is the potential for loss. This material is being provided for informational purposes only and nothing herein constitutes investment, legal, accounting or tax advice, or a recommendation to buy, sell or hold a security. No recommendation or advice is being given as to whether any investment is suitable for a particular investor. It should not be assumed that any investments in securities, companies, sectors or markets identified and described were or will be profitable. All information is current as of the date of herein and is subject to change without notice. Any views or opinions expressed may not reflect those of the firm as a whole. Zacks Investment Research does not engage in investment banking, market making or asset management activities of any securities. These returns are from hypothetical portfolios consisting of stocks with Zacks Rank = 1 that were rebalanced monthly with zero transaction costs. These are not the returns of actual portfolios of stocks. The S&P 500 is an unmanaged index. Visit https://www.zacks.com/performance for information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.


Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report

KnightSwift Transportation Holdings Inc. (KNX): Free Stock Analysis Report

Forward Air Corporation (FWRD): Free Stock Analysis Report

ArcBest Corporation (ARCB): Free Stock Analysis Report

P.A.M. Transportation Services, Inc. (PTSI): Free Stock Analysis Report

Landstar System, Inc. (LSTR): Free Stock Analysis Report

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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: ArcBest Corp, KnightSwift Transportation, Landstar System, P.A.M. Transportation Services and Forward Air Corp
 

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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: ArcBest Corp, KnightSwift Transportation, Landstar System, P.A.M. Transportation Services and Forward Air Corp

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