UPS Earnings Beat on Growth in Exports, Ground


United Parcel Service (UPS) reported quarterly earnings that topped analysts' forecasts on Thursday, helped by improvement in ground and export shipments.

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Immediately after the earnings announcement, the company's shares fell slightly in pre-market trading. (Click here to get the latest quotes for UPS: UPS)

As cost-conscious consumers shift from air express to slower and cheaper modes of shipping, UPS's stronger North American domestic network puts it in a better position than rival FedEx, which focuses more international air shipments.

The world's largest package-delivery company posted first-quarter earnings excluding items of $1.04 per share, up from $1 a share in the year-earlier period.

Revenue increased to $13.43 billion from $13.14 billion a year ago.

Analysts had expected the company to report earnings excluding items of $1.01 a share on $13.46 billion in revenue, according to a consensus estimate from Thomson Reuters.

The company said it benefited from a stronger-than-expected post- holiday season in January. Global export volume increased 3.8 percent, driven by an 8 percent increase in shipments to Asia.

In the quarter, UPS delivered 16.2 million packages a day, up 4.1 percent from the same period a year earlier.

Separately, UPS announced plans to purchase Hungary-based pharmaceutical logistics company CEMELOG Zrt. UPS expects to complete the transaction in the second quarter of 2013,

UPS dropped its $7 billion bid for Dutch delivery firm TNT Express in January after European regulators said they would veto the deal on antitrust concerns.

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