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Waste Management CEO: Business tells us the US economy is strong

Brian Sozzi

If there is a U.S. recession lurking in the weeds, it’s not showing up in our trash.

“Our business right now tells us the economy is still reasonably strong,” Waste Management CEO Jim Fish said on Yahoo Finance’s The First Trade.

The unicorn that is the 2019 U.S. recession didn’t show up in Waste Management’s second quarter results by any measure. Waste Management’s second quarter sales rose a solid 6% year-over-year to $3.95 billion. Analysts had expected $3.94 billion.

Organic revenue growth in the company’s key collection and disposal business rose 7%, powered mostly by volume. Operating profits for the segment rose by a faster 9.3% from the prior year as Fish kept a lid on expenses.

Fish told analysts on an earnings call Thursday that the pipeline of special waste business remains strong, as does the overall industrial waste complex. Customers are simply not pulling back, Fish suggested on the call.

Waste Management’s earnings came in at $1.11 a share, better than analyst projections for $1.07 a share.

Fish told Yahoo Finance that the company is full steam ahead with investing aggressively in its business. Chief among the company’s priorities include more tech inside its garbage trucks to better manage resources and a new state-of-the-art recycling center using robots.

Is an imminent recession ahead amid these solid sales numbers and bold capex plans from Waste Management? Unlikely.

The Federal Reserve should take note.

Brian Sozzi is an editor-at-large and co-host of The First Trade at Yahoo Finance. Follow him on Twitter @BrianSozzi

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