Hot Freight Companies To Own For 2015


BALTIMORE (Stockpickr) — Put down the 10-K filings and the stock screeners. It’s time to take a break from the traditional methods of generating investment ideas. Instead, let the crowd do it for you.

Read More: 5 Short-Squeeze Stocks That Could Pop in September

From hedge funds to individual investors, scores of market participants are turning to social media to figure out which stocks are worth watching. It’s a concept that’s known as “crowdsourcing,” and it uses the masses to identify emerging trends in the market.


Crowdsourcing has long been a popular tool for the advertising industry, but it also makes a lot of sense as an investment tool. After all, the market is completely driven by the supply and demand, so it can be valuable to see what names are trending among the crowd.

While some fund managers are already trying to leverage social media resources like Twitter to find algorithmic trading opportunities, for most investors, crowdsourcing works best as a starting point for investors who want a starting point in their analysis. Today, we’ll leverage the power of the crowd to take a look at some of the most active stocks on the market today.

Hot Freight Companies To Own For 2015: Marten Transport Ltd (MRTN)


Marten Transport, Ltd. is a temperature-sensitive truckload carrier. The Company specializes in transporting and distributing food and other consumer packaged goods that require a temperature-controlled or insulated environment. It operates throughout the United States and in parts of Canada and Mexico. The Company operates in two segments: Truckload and Logistics. During the year ended December 31, 2011, approximately 81% of its truckload revenue resulted from hauling temperature-sensitive products and 19% from hauling dry freight. Its long-haul traffic lanes are between the Midwest and the West Coast, Southwest, Southeast, and the East Coast, as well as from California to the Pacific Northwest. It provides regional truckload carrier services in the Southeast, West Coast, Midwest, South Central and Northeast regions.


The Company derives truckload revenue from fuel surcharges, loading and unloading activities, equipment detention and other ancillary services. Its operating revenue also includes revenue reported within its Logistics segment, which consists of revenue from its internal brokerage and intermodal operations, and through its 45% interest in MW Logistics, LLC (MWL), a third-party provider of logistics services to the transportation industry. Brokerage services involve arranging for another company to transport freight for the Company’s customers, while it retains the billing, collection and customer management responsibilities. Intermodal services involve the transport of its trailers on railroad flatcars for a portion of a trip, with the balance of the trip using its tractors or, to a lesser extent, contracted carriers. It focuses on large food and consumer-packaged goods companies whose products require temperature-sensitive services and who ship multiple truckloads per week. As of December 31, 2011, its customers were General Mills and Kraft.


As of December 31, 2011, the Company operated a fleet of 2,2 81 tractors, including 2,233 company owned tractors and 48 t! ractors supplied by independent contractors. The average age of its company owned tractor fleet at December 31, 2011 was approximately 2.6 years. As of December 31, 2011, it operated a fleet of 4,124 trailers. Most of its trailers are equipped with Thermo-King refrigeration units, air ride suspensions and anti-lock brakes. The average age of its trailer fleet as of December 31, 2011 was approximately 2.4 years.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Monica Gerson]

    Marten Transport (NASDAQ: MRTN) is estimated to post its Q3 earnings at $0.23 per share on revenue of $168.28 million.

    CSX (NYSE: CSX) is expected to post its Q3 earnings at $0.43 per share on revenue of $2.95 billion.

  • [By Seth Jayson]

    Marten Transport (Nasdaq: MRTN  ) reported earnings on July 16. Here are the numbers you need to know.

    The 10-second takeaway
    For the quarter ended June 30 (Q2), Marten Transport missed estimates on revenues and missed estimates on earnings per share.

Hot Freight Companies To Own For 2015: Canadian National Railway Co (CNR.TO)


Canadian National Railway Company (CN), incorporated on August 24, 1995, is engaged in the rail and related transportation business. CN’s network of approximately 20,100 route miles spans Canada and mid-America, connecting three coasts: the Atlantic, the Pacific and the Gulf of Mexico, serving the ports of Vancouver, Prince Rupert (British Columbia), Montreal, Halifax, New Orleans, and Mobile (Alabama) and metropolitan areas of Toronto, Buffalo, Chicago, Detroit, Duluth (Minnesota)/Superior (Wisconsin), Green Bay (Wisconsin), Minneapolis/St. Paul, Memphis and Jackson (Mississippi), with connections to all points in North America. CN’s network, and its co-production agreements, routing protocols, marketing alliances and interline agreements, provide CN customers access to all three North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) nations. In March 2012, the Company acquired a locomotive program.


Petroleum and chemicals

The petroleum and chemicals c ommodity group consists of a range of commodities, including chemicals, sulfur, plastics, petroleum products and liquefied petroleum gas products. The Company’s petroleum and chemicals shipments originate in the Louisiana petrochemical corridor between New Orleans and Baton Rouge; in northern Alberta, and in eastern Canadian regional plants.

Metals and minerals

The metals and minerals commodity group consists primarily of non-ferrous base metals and ores, concentrates, iron ore, steel, construction materials, machinery and dimensional loads. The Company provides rail access to aluminum, mining, steel and iron ore producing regions.


Forest products

The forest products commodity group includes range of lumber, panels, paper, wood pulp and other fibers such as logs, recycled paper, wood chips, and wood pellets. The Company has rail access to the western and eastern Canadian fiber-producing regions. In United States, the Comp any is located to serve both the Midwest and southern United! States corridors with interline connections to other Class I railroads.

Coal

The coal commodity group consists of thermal grades of bituminous coal, metallurgical coal and petroleum coke. Canadian thermal and metallurgical coal is exported through terminals on the west coast of Canada to offshore markets. In United States, thermal coal is transported from mines served in southern Illinois, or from western United States mines through interchange with other railroads, to utilities in the Midwest and southeast United States, as well as offshore markets through terminals in the Gulf and the Port of Prince Rupert.


Grain and fertilizers

The grain and fertilizers commodity group depends primarily on crops grown and fertilizers processed in western Canada and the United States Midwest. The grain segment consists of three primary segments: food grains (mainly wheat, oats and malting barley), feed grains and feed grain products (inc luding feed barley, feed wheat, peas, corn, ethanol and dried distillers grains), and oilseeds and oilseed nproducts (primarily canola seed, oil and meal, and soybeans).

Intermodal

The intermodal commodity group is consists of two segments: domestic and international. The domestic segment transports consumer products and manufactured goods, operating through both retail and wholesale channels, within domestic Canada, domestic United States., Mexico and transborder, while the international segment handles import and export container traffic, directly serving the ports of Vancouver, Prince Rupert, Montreal, Halifax and New Orleans.


Automotive

The automotive commodity group moves both finished vehicles and parts throughout North America, providing rail access to certain vehicle assembly plants in Canada, and Michigan and Mississippi in the United States. The Company also serves vehicle distribution facilities in Canada and the United States, as well as parts production facilities in Mi! chigan an! d Ontario. The Company serves shippers of import vehicles via the ports of Halifax and Vancouver, and through interchange with other railroads.

The Company competes with Canadian Pacific Railway Company.


Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Roadmap2Retire]

    I am also considering various stocks that are not currently in my portfolio, but the current high valuations do not provide many options.

    Canadian National Railway (CNR.TO) engages in transportation of goods including petroleum and chemicals, grain and fertilizers, coal, metals and minerals, forest products, intermodal, and automotive products. The company operates 20,100 route miles of track that spans Canada adn mid-America connecting the three coasts of Atlantic, Pacific and Gulf of Mexico. CNR is a dividend contender that has been raising its dividends for 17 consecutive years and has a 5-yr DGR of 13.9% and a 10-yr DGR of 17.4%. Norfolk Southern (NSC) engages in rail transportation of raw materials, intermediate and finished goods operating approximately 20,000 router miles across the southern and eastern US. NSC and other railroads stand to benefit from the oil boom in continental US, and before permanent pipelines are put in place, railroads are the only option available to transport the huge supplies. NSC is a dividend contender raising its dividends for 12 consecutive years and has a 5-yr DGR of 10.8% and 10-yr DGR of 21.1%. Procter & Gamble (PG) and Unilever plc (UL) are giants in the consumer packaged goods field. PG has five segments – beauty, grooming, healthcare, fabric care and home care. UL has four segments – personal care, foods, refreshment and home care. PG has been raising dividends for 57 years; has a 5-yr DGR of 10.2% and a 10-yr DGR of 10.8%. UL has been raising dividends for 25 years; has a 5-yr 7.07%. Aerospace & Defense Sector: With the global turmoils continuing and the rise of new conflicts across Eastern Europe and Middle East, I am considering adding some exposure to the Aerospace & Defense Sector. I recently posted an article regarding the current valuation of the stocks in the sector here. Index Funds – China ETF, Emerging Markets – I am considering adding a new index fund to my portfolio to track the Chinese marke

Hot Freight Companies To Own For 2015: Echo Global Logistics Inc (ECHO)


Echo Global Logistics, Inc. (Echo) is a provider of technology enabled transportation and supply chain management services. Its Web-based technology platform compiles and analyzes data from its network of over 24,000 transportation providers to serve its clients’ shipping and freight management needs. Its technology platform, composed of Web-based software applications and a database, enables it to identify excess transportation capacity, obtain competitive rates, and execute thousands of shipments every day. It focuses on arranging transportation across truckload (TL) and less than truck load (LTL), and it also offers small parcel, inter-modal (which involves moving a shipment by rail and truck), domestic air, expedited and international transportation services. Its logistics services include rate negotiation, shipment execution and tracking, carrier management, routing compliance, freight bill audit and payment and performance management reporting, including executive da shboard tools. Effective January 1, 2011, the Company acquired Nationwide Traffic Services, LLC. (Nationwide) Effective July 1, 2011, the Company acquired Advantage Transport, Inc. (Advantage). Effective December 1, 2011, the Company acquired the stock of Trailer Transport Systems (TTS). In June 2012, the Company acquired Plum Logistics, LLC. In July 2012, it acquired all of the assets of Shipper Direct Logistics, Inc. In October 2012, the Company acquired Sharp Freight Systems, Inc.


The Company’s clients fall into two categories, enterprise and transactional. Its enterprise clients outsource their transportation management function to Echo. It enters into multi-year contracts with its enterprise clients. As part of its value proposition, it also provides core logistics services to these clients, including the management of both freight expenditures and logistical issues surrounding freight to be transported. It provides transportation and logistics services t o its transactional clients on a shipment-by-shipment basis.! It is a non-asset-based provider of technology enabled transportation and logistics services. Through its carrier network, it provides transportation services using a range of modes of transportation.


Transportation Services

The Company provides Truckload (TL) services across all TL segments, including dry vans, temperature-controlled units and flatbeds. Using its LaneIQ technology, it provide advanced dispatch, communication and data collection tools and capacity information to its clients on a real-time basis. The Company provides less than truckload (LTL) services involving the shipment of single or multiple pallets of freight. Using its RateIQ 2.0 technology, it obtains real-time pricing and transit time information for every LTL shipment from its database of LTL carriers. It provides small parcel services for packages of all sizes. Using its EchoPak technology, it delivers cost saving opportunities to its clients. Inter-modal transportation is the shipping of freight by multiple modes, using a container that is transferred between ships, railcars or trucks. It offers inter-modal transportation services for its clients, which utilizes both trucks and rail. The Company provides domestic air and expedited shipment services for its clients when traditional LTL services do not meet delivery requirements. It uses ETM track and trace tools for up to date information to its clients through EchoTrak. The Company provides air and ocean transportation services for its clients, offering a comprehensive international delivery option to its clients.


Logistics Services

In addition to arranging for transportation, the Company provides logistics services, either on-site (in the case of some enterprise clients) or off-site, to manage the flow of those goods from origin to destination. Its core logistics services include rate negotiation; procurement of transportation, both contractually and in the spot m arket; shipment execution and tracking; carrier management, ! reporting! and compliance; executive dashboard presentations and detailed shipment reports; freight bill audit and payment; claims processing and service refund management; design and management of inbound client freight programs; individually configured Web portals and self-service data warehouses; enterprise resource planning (ERP) integration with transactional shipment data, and integration of shipping applications into client e-commerce sites. Customers communicate their freight needs, typically on a shipment-by-shipment basis, to the individual or team responsible for their account. Customers communicate with it by means of telephone, fax, Internet, e-mail, or Electronic Data Interchange (EDI).


Technology Platform

The Company’s ETM technology platform allows it to analyze its clients’ transportation requirements and provide customized shipping recommendations. It collects and store pricing and market capacity data in its ETM database from each interac tion with carriers, and its database expands as a result of these interactions. It has also developed data acquisition tools, which retrieve information from both private and public transportation databases, including subscription-based sources and public transportation rate boards, and incorporate that information into the ETM database. Its clients communicate their transportation needs to it electronically through its EchoTrak web portal, other computer protocols, or by phone. ETM generates pricing and carrier information for its clients by accessing pre-negotiated rates with preferred carriers or using present or historical pricing and capacity information contained in its database. If a client enters its own shipment, ETM automatically alerts the appropriate account executive. After the carrier is selected, either by it or the client, its account executives use its ETM technology platform to manage all aspects of the shipping process.


The Company’s FastLan e is an Internet-based Web portal, which allows its carriers! to view ! shipments available for tender, update equipment availability and preferred lanes, check on the status of all unpaid invoices, unbilled shipments, shipments in transit and other information used to resolve any billing discrepancies. There is also a mobile FastLane application, which allows carriers to view similar information remotely. eConnect is a set of tools, which allows the Company’s clients and carriers to interact directly with ETM electronically through any of several computer protocols, including EDI, extensible markup language (XML) and file transfer protocol (FTP). The eConnect tools serve as an electronic bridge between the other elements of its ETM technology platform and its clients’ enterprise resource planning (ERP), billing, accounts receivable, accounts payable, order management, back office and e-commerce systems. Through eConnect, its clients are able to request shipping services and receive financial and tracking data using their existing systems.


EchoTrak is an Internet-based Web portal, which connects and integrates its clients with ETM. By entering a username and password, its clients are able to enter orders, display historical and active shipments in the ETM system using configurable data entry screens sorted by carrier, price, delivery date, destination and other relevant specifications. EchoTrak also generates automatic alerts to ensure that shipments are moving in accordance with the client specifications and timeline. There is also a mobile EchoTrak application, which allows customers to perform similar functions remotely. RateIQ2.0 is a pricing engine, which manages LTL tariffs and generates rate quotes and transit times for LTL shipments. RateIQ2.0 also provides integrated tools to manage dispatch, communications, data collection and management functions relating to LTL shipments. LaneIQ is a pricing engine, which generates rate quotes for TL shipments. LaneIQ also provides integrated tools to man age dispatch, communications, headhaul and backhaul data col! lection a! nd management functions relating to TL shipments. EchoPak is a small parcel pricing and audit engine. For each small parcel shipped, EchoPak audits carrier compliance with on-time delivery requirements and pricing tariffs. In addition, EchoPak tracks information for each parcel and is able to aggregate and analyze that data for clients. For instance, clients are able to view shipments by date, business unit, product line and location, and clients can access information regarding service levels and pricing


The Company’s Shipment Tracking stores shipment information en-route and after final delivery. The shipment data is acquired through its carrier EDI integration, allowing its clients to track the location and status of all shipments on one screen, regardless of mode or carrier. Final delivery information is permanently archived, allowing it to provide its clients with carrier performance reporting by comparing actual delivery times with the published transit time standards.

Document Imaging allows the Company to store digital images of all shipping documents, including bills of lading and delivery receipts. CAS (Cost Allocation System) automatically audits carrier invoices against its rating engine and accounts payable accrual system. If the amounts match, the invoice is automatically released for payment. If the amounts do not match, the invoice is sent to various administrative personnel for manual processing and resolution. CAS also integrates to its general ledger, accounts receivable and accounts payable systems. Accounting includes its general ledger, accounts receivable and accounts payable functions. Accounting is integrated with CAS and EchoIQ. EchoIQ stores internally and externally generated data to support its reporting and analytic functions and integrate all of its core applications with ETM. ETM supports its logistics services, which it provides to its clients as part of its value proposition. Its ET M technology platform is able to track individual shipments ! and provi! de customized data and reports throughout the lifecycle of the shipment, allowing it to manage the entire shipping process for its clients. It also market Flex TMS.


The Company competes with C.H. Robinson Worldwide, Total Quality Logistics, UPS, FedEx, Schneider, Conway, JB Hunt and ABF.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Will Ashworth]

    Without further adieu, here are my five best stocks for the next 20 years:

    Best Stocks #1 (Small Cap): Echo Global Logistics (ECHO)

    Echo Global Logistics (ECHO) uses web-based proprietary technology to provide business process outsourcing to the transportation industry. Founded in 2005, ECHO serves more than 28,500 small- and midsize customers who use its technology to access the best shipping prices from a network of 24,000 carriers in a matter of seconds.

  • [By Seth Jayson]

    Calling all cash flows
    When you are trying to buy the market’s best stocks, it’s worth checking up on your companies’ free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That’s what we do with this series. Today, we’re checking in on Echo Global Logistics (Nasdaq: ECHO  ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.

Hot Freight Companies To Own For 2015: Con-way Inc (CNW)

Con-way Inc. (Con-way), incorporated in 1958, provides transportation, logistics and supply-chain management services for a wide range of manufacturing, industrial and retail customers. Con-way’s business units operate in regional and transcontinental less-than-truckload and full-truckload freight transportation, contract logistics and supply-chain management, multimodal freight brokerage, and trailer manufacturing. Con-way is divided into four segments: Freight, Logistics, Truckload, and Other. At December 31, 2011, Con-way Freight operated 286 freight service centers, of which 144 were owned and 142 were leased. At December 31, 2011, Con-way Freight owned and operated approximately 9,200 tractors and 26,400 trailers, including tractors held under capital lease agreements.


Freight

The Freight segment consists of the operating results of the Con-way Freight business unit. Con-way Freight is a less-than-truckload (LTL) motor carrier that utilize s a network of freight service centers to provide day-definite regional, inter-regional and transcontinental less-than-truckload freight services throughout North America. LTL carriers transport shipments from multiple shippers utilizing a network of freight service centers combined with a fleet of line-haul and pickup-and-delivery tractors and trailers. Freight is picked up from customers and consolidated for shipment at the originating service center. Freight is consolidated for transportation to the destination service centers or freight assembly centers. At Freight assembly centers, freight from various service centers can be reconsolidated for transportation to other freight assembly centers or destination service centers. From the destination service center, the freight is delivered to the customer. Typically, LTL shipments weigh between 100 and 15,000 pounds. In 2011, Con-way Freight’s average weight per shipment was 1,305 pounds.


Logistics

The Logistics segment consists of the operating results o! f the Menlo Worldwide Logistics business unit. Menlo Worldwide Logistics develops contract-logistics solutions, which can include managing complex distribution networks, and providing supply-chain engineering and consulting, and multimodal freight brokerage services. Menlo Worldwide Logistics’ supply-chain management offerings are primarily related to transportation-management and contract-warehousing services. Transportation management refers to the management of asset-based carriers and third-party transportation providers for customers’ inbound and outbound supply-chain needs through the use of logistics management systems to consolidate, book and track shipments. Contract warehousing refers to the optimization and operation of warehouses for customers using technology and warehouse-management systems to reduce inventory carrying costs and supply-chain cycle times. For several customers, contract-warehousing operations include light assembly or kitting operations.


Menlo Worldwide Logistics provides its services using a customer- or project-based approach when the supply-chain solution requires customer-specific transportation management, single-client warehouses, and/or single-customer technological solutions. However, Menlo Worldwide Logistics also utilizes a shared-resource, process-based approach that leverages a centralized transportation-management group, multi-client warehouses and technology to provide scalable solutions to multiple customers. Additionally, Menlo Worldwide Logistics segments its business based on customer type. At December 31, 2011, Menlo Worldwide Logistics operated 76 warehouses in North America, of which 55 were leased by Menlo Worldwide Logistics and 21 were leased or owned by clients of Menlo Worldwide Logistics. Outside of North America, Menlo Worldwide Logistics operated an additional 63 warehouses, of which 48 were leased by Menlo Worldwide Logistics and 15 were leased or owned by clients. Men lo Worldwide Logistics owns and operates a small fleet of tr! actors an! d trailers to support its operations, but primarily utilizes third-party transportation providers for the movement of customer shipments.


Truckload

The Truckload segment consists of the operating results of the Con-way Truckload business unit. Con-way Truckload is a full-truckload motor carrier that utilizes a fleet of tractors and trailers to provide short- and long-haul, asset-based transportation services throughout North America. Con-way Truckload provides dry-van transportation services to manufacturing, industrial and retail customers while using single drivers as well as two-person driver teams over long-haul routes, with each trailer containing only one customer’s goods. This origin-to-destination freight movement limits intermediate handling and is not dependent on the same network of locations utilized by LTL carriers. On average, Con-way Truckload transports shipments more than 800 miles from origin to destination. Under its regional s ervice offering, Con-way Truckload transports truckload shipments of less than 600 miles, including local-area service for truckload shipments of less than 100 miles.


Con-way Truckload offers through-trailer service into and out of Mexico through all major gateways in Texas, Arizona and California. For a shipment with an origin or destination in Mexico, Con-way Truckload provides transportation for the domestic portion of the freight move, and a Mexican carrier provides the pick-up, linehaul and delivery services within Mexico. At December 31, 2011, Con-way Truckload operated five owned terminals with bulk fuel, tractor and trailer parking, and in some cases, equipment maintenance and washing facilities. In addition, Con-way Truckload also utilizes various drop yards for temporary trailer storage throughout the United States. At December 31, 2011, Con-way Truckload owned and operated approximately 2,700 tractors and 8,000 trailers, including tractors held under capital lease agreements.


Other

! The Other! reporting segment consists of the operating results of Road Systems, a trailer manufacturer, and certain corporate activities for which the related income or expense has not been allocated to other reporting segments, including results related to corporate re-insurance activities and corporate properties. Road Systems primarily manufactures and refurbishes trailers for Con-way Freight and Con-way Truckload.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Wunderlich’s Nicholas Bender thinks FedEx’s results bode well for Old Dominion (ODFL), Con-way (CNW) and Saia (SAIA):


    We expect all less-than-truckload carriers to benefit in 2Q14 from the same trends that carried FedEx Freight to a banner 4Q14. This includes Hold-rated Old Dominion, which will continue to grow at well above market rates, and Buy-rated Con-way, which we believe can leverage a strong 2Q14 to prime the pump on margin enhancement efforts. Our favorite name in the space remains Saia (SAIA-$42.92, Buy), which will once again see accelerating tonnage growth in 2Q14. Though tonnage growth will moderate in  2H14 due to steeper comps, there remains considerable potential for the company to boost yield and continue winning incremental business with new accounts.

  • [By John Kell]

    Con-way Inc.(CNW) issued a weaker-than-expected profit outlook for the fourth quarter after the trucking company encountered challenges at its Con-way Freight and Menlo Worldwide Logistics operations. The company’s shares declined 6.1% to $38.89 premarket.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Shares of Atlas Air have plunged 15% to $37.13 today at 1:48 p.m., on what has been a lousy day for shippers and those involved with shipping. Trucking company Con-Way (CNW) has fallen 2.5% to $40.38 after it said earnings would be unchanged from a year ago, well short of analyst forecasts. FedEx (FDX) has dropped 0.7% following UPS’s miss.

Hot Freight Companies To Own For 2015: Forward Air Corp (FWRD)


Forward Air Corporation operates in two segments: Forward Air, Inc. (Forward Air) and Forward Air Solutions, Inc. (FASI). Through the Company’s Forward Air segment, it is a provider of time-definite surface transportation and related logistics services to the North American deferred air freight market. It offers its customers local pick-up and delivery (Forward Air Complete) and scheduled surface transportation of cargo. It transports cargo that must be delivered at a specific time but is less time-sensitive than traditional air freight. As of December 31, 2011, it operated its Forward Air segment through a network of terminals located on or near airports in 85 cities in the United States and Canada, including a central sorting facility in Columbus, Ohio and 12 regional hubs serving key markets. It also offers its customers an array of logistics and other services including expedited full truckload (TLX); dedicated fleets; warehousing; customs brokerage; and shipment conso lidation, deconsolidation and handling. During the year ended December 31, 2011, approximately 23.9% of the freight it handled was for overnight delivery, approximately 61.3% was for delivery within two to three days and the balance was for delivery in four or more days. Through its FASI segment, it provides pool distribution services throughout the Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, Midwest and Southwest continental United States. Pool distribution involves managing high-frequency, last mile handling and distribution of time-sensitive product to destinations in geographic regions. In March 2013, it acquired Total Quality, Inc. In February 2014, Forward Air Corporation acquired Central States Trucking Co. and Central States Logistics, Inc. from Central States Inc.


Forward Air

The Company receives freight from air freight forwarders, integrated air cargo carriers and passenger and cargo airlines at its terminals, which are located on or near airports in the U nited States and Canada. It also picks up freight from custo! mers at designated locations via our Forward Air Complete service. It transports these shipments by truck through its network to its terminals nearest the destinations of the shipments. It operates scheduled service to and from each of its terminals through its Columbus, Ohio central sorting facility or through one of its 12 regional hubs. It also operates scheduled shuttle service directly between terminals where the volume of freight warrants bypassing the Columbus, Ohio central sorting facility or a regional hub. When a shipment arrives at its terminal nearest its destination, the customer arranges for the shipment to be picked up and delivered to its final destination, or it, in the alternative, through its Forward Air Complete service, deliver the freight for the customer to its final destination. Its airport-to-airport network consists of terminals located in the 85 cities. As of December 31, 2011, independent agents and FASI operate 18 and two of its Forward Air locat ions.


The Company operates direct terminal-to-terminal services and regional overnight service between terminals where justified by freight volumes. It provides regional overnight service to the markets within its network. Direct shipments also reduce the likelihood of damage because of reduced handling and sorting of the freight. It operates regional hubs in Atlanta, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Denver, Kansas City, Los Angeles, New Orleans, Newark, Newburgh, Orlando, and Sacramento. During 2011, the average weekly volume of freight moving through its network was approximately 34.0 million pounds per week. During 2011, its average shipment weighed approximately 717 pounds and shipment sizes ranged from small boxes weighing only a few pounds to large shipments of several thousand pounds.


The Company’s logistics and other services allow customers to access services from a single source: expedited full truckload (TLX); dedicated fleets; cu stoms brokerage, such as assistance with the United States C! ustoms an! d Border Protection (U.S. Customs) procedures for both import and export shipments; warehousing, dock and office space; drayage and intermodal; hotshot or ad-hoc ultra expedited services, and shipment consolidation and handling, such as shipment build-up and break-down and reconsolidation of air or ocean pallets or containers.


Forward Air Solutions

Through the Company’s FASI segment, it provides pool distribution services through a network of terminals and service locations in 19 cities throughout the Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, Midwest and Southwest continental United States. Pool distribution involves managing high-frequency handling and distribution of time-sensitive product to destinations in specific geographic regions. Its customers for this product are regional and nationwide distributors and retailers, such as mall, strip mall and outlet-based retail chains. Its pool distribution network consists of terminals and service locations in the 19 cities. Its Forward Air wholesale customer base is comprised of freight forwarders, integrated air cargo carriers and passenger and cargo airlines. Its air freight forwarder customers vary in size from independent, single facility companies to international logistics companies, such as SEKO Worldwide, AIT Worldwide Logistics, Expeditors International of Washington, Associated Global, UPS Supply Chain Solutions and Pilot Air Freight. Its FASI pool distribution customers are consisted of national and regional retailers and distributors, such as The Limited, The Marmaxx Group, The GAP, and Aeropostale. The Company also participates in air cargo and retail trade shows and advertise its services through direct mail programs and through the Internet via www.forwardair.com and www.forwardairsolutions.com.


Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Seth Jayson]

    Calling all cash flows
    When you are trying to buy the market’s best stocks, it’s worth checking up on your companies’ free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That’s what we do with this series. Today, we’re checking in on Forward Air (Nasdaq: FWRD  ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.

Hot Freight Companies To Own For 2015: TNT Express NV (TNTE)


TNT Express NV is the Netherlands-based express delivery company. It collects, transports and delivers documents, parcels and freight on a time-certain or day-definite basis. The Company operates worldwide with domestic, regional and intercontinental delivery. It has own operations in more than 60 countries and can deliver to more than 200 countries through own operations, subcontractors and agents. Its customers are international companies, as well as small and medium enterprises. The Company serves industries such as technology, automotive, industrial, healthcare and lifestyle, as well as financial institutions and governments. The Company operates interconnected international air and road networks. The air network consists of a central air hub in Liege, Belgium, and a fleet of more than 50 aircrafts. The road networks are operated in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Australia and South America. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Inyoung Hwang]

    TNT Express NV (TNTE) lost 4.3 percent to 6.33 euros, its lowest price in four months. PostNL NV, the Dutch mail service with operations in the U.K. and Germany, said it will sell about half of its 29.8 percent stake in the Dutch package-delivery company to reduce debt. The 15 percent stake up for sale is valued at about 540 million euros ($738 million), according to data compiled by Bloomberg. PostNL gained 1.8 percent to 4.17 euros.

  • [By Robert Wall]

    One of the country’s largest employers with more than 150,000 staff, Royal Mail has shifted away from letters to more lucrative package shipping, competing with TNT Express NV (TNTE) of the Netherlands and Deutsche Post AG (DPW)’s DHL Express.

Hot Freight Companies To Own For 2015: Werner Enterprises Inc (WERN)


Werner Enterprises, Inc., incorporated on September 14, 1982, is a transportation and logistics company engaged primarily in hauling truckload shipments of general commodities in both interstate and intrastate commerce. The Company also provides logistics services through its value added services (VAS) division. As of the year ended December 31, 2012, the Company had a fleet of 7,150 trucks, of which 6,505 were Company-operated and 645 were owned and operated by independent contractors. The Company operates in two segments: Truckload Transportation Services (Truckload) and VAS.


Truckload segment

The Company’s Truckload segment consists of the One-Way Truckload and Specialized Services units. One-Way Truckload includes the operating fleets: the regional short-haul (Regional) fleet transports a variety of consumer nondurable products and other commodities in truckload quantities within geographic regions across the United States using dry van trai lers; the medium-to-long-haul van (Van) fleet provides comparable truckload van service over irregular routes, and the expedited (Expedited) fleet provides time-sensitive truckload services utilizing driver teams.


Specialized Services provides truckload services dedicated to a specific customer, generally for a retail distribution center or manufacturing facility, including services for products requiring specialized trailers such as flatbed or temperature-controlled trailers. The Company’s Truckload fleets operate throughout the 48 contiguous United States, both common and contract, granted by the United States Department of Transportation (DOT). The Company also has authority to operate in several provinces of Canada and to provide through-trailer service into and out of Mexico. The principal types of freight the Company transports include retail store merchandise, consumer products, grocery products and manufactured products. The Company focuses on transport ing consumer nondurable products that generally ship.


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VAS segment

The Company’s VAS segment is a non-asset-based transportation and logistics provider. VAS is consists of four operating units that provide non-trucking services to the Company’s customers: truck brokerage (Brokerage) uses contracted carriers to complete customer shipments; freight management (Freight Management) offers a range of single-source logistics management services and solutions; the intermodal (Intermodal) unit offers rail transportation through alliances with rail and drayage providers as an alternative to truck transportation, and Werner Global Logistics international (WGL) provides complete management of global shipments from origin to destination using a combination of air, ocean, truck and rail transportation modes. The Company’s Brokerage unit had transportation services contracts with approximately 9,400 carriers as of December 31, 2012.


Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Mike Deane]

    Werner Enterprises (WERN) announced its third quarter earnings after the bell on Thursday, posting a 1% change in revenues from last year’s Q3, but a 15% drop in net income.

    The Omaha, NE-based logistics and transportation company announced Q3 revenue of $511.73 million, which was up slightly from last year’s $506.50 million revenue figure. WERN reported net income for the quarter of $21.53 million, or 29 cents per diluted share, which was down from last year’s Q3 earnings of $25.13 million, or 34 cents per diluted share.


    The company was able to meet analyst views of 29 cents EPS, and slightly surpass the revenue estimate of $503.82 million.

    WERN shares were up 21 cents, or 0.90%, at Thursday’s market close, but were edging lower in after-hours trading. YTD, the company’s stock is up just over 4%.

  • [By Monica Gerson]

    Werner Enterprises (NASDAQ: WERN) is expected to post its Q3 earnings at $0.29 per share on revenue of $503.82 million.

    Chipotle Mexican Grill (NYSE: CMG) is estimated to post its Q3 earnings at $2.78 per share on revenue of $820.28 million.

  • [By Seth Jayson]

    Werner Enterprises (Nasdaq: WERN  ) reported earnings on April 18. Here are the numbers you need to know.

    The 10-second takeaway
    For the quarter ended March 31 (Q1), Werner Enterprises missed estimates on revenues and missed estimates on earnings per share.

  • [By Rich Duprey]

    Transportation and logistics specialist Werner Enterprises (NASDAQ: WERN  ) announced this morning its second-quarter dividend of $0.05 per share, the same rate it’s paid since 2007.

Hot Freight Companies To Own For 2015: Knight Transportation Inc (KNX)


Knight Transportation, Inc. (Knight), incorporated on August 31, 1989, is a provider of multiple truckload transportation services, which generally involve the movement of full trailer or container loads of freight from origin to destination for a single customer. The Company is a provider of multiple truckload transportation services with a nationwide network of service centers through which it operates one of the tractor fleets. In addition to its own fleet, the Company also partners with third-party equipment providers to provide truckload capacity and a broad range of solutions to truckload shippers. The Company has five operating segments comprised of three asset-based operating segments: dry van truckload, temperature-controlled truckload and port services and two non-asset-based operating segments brokerage and intermodal services. Through its asset-based and non-asset-based capabilities the Company is able to transport, or can arrange for the transportation of, gen eral commodities for customers throughout the United States and parts of Canada and Mexico.

The Company’s asset-based businesses generally include dry van truckload, refrigerated truckload, dedicated truckload, and drayage services. Its non-asset-based services generally include rail intermodal and truckload brokerage services. However, within its asset-based services, the use of independent contractors to provide tractors lowers the capital investment in its dry van and refrigerated operations. In addition, drayage operations generally involve less expensive tractors with longer lives and do not require a investment in trailering equipment. As of December 31, 2012, it operated 3,627 company-owned tractors with an average age of 1.9 years. It also had under contract 507 tractors owned and operated by independent contractors. Its trailer fleet consisted of 9,564 53-foot long trailers with an average age of 5.5 years and includes 1,092 temperature-controlled trai lers.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Victor Nguyen]

    A report released Thursday morning, Citigroup analyst Christian Wetherbee upgrades Knight Transportation (NYSE: KNX) to BUY from NEUTRAL, increasing price target from $17 to $22.

  • [By Sean Williams]

    Swift Transportation (NYSE: SWFT  ) , for example, delivered a 4% increase in revenue this past quarter in spite of having fewer trucks in service. The company was able to realize better utilization of its existing fleet and actually saw fuel prices fall from the previous year. The results were even more robust for Knight Transportation (NYSE: KNX  ) , whose shareholders saw revenue rise by 7% as the company grew from the year-ago quarter for the 14th straight time and delivered growth from each of its business segments.

  • [By Seth Jayson]

    Calling all cash flows
    When you are trying to buy the market’s best stocks, it’s worth checking up on your companies’ free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That’s what we do with this series. Today, we’re checking in on Knight Transportation (NYSE: KNX  ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.

Hot Freight Companies To Own For 2015: PostNL NV (PNL)

PostNL NV is a Netherlands-based Company active in delivery sector. The Company is engaged in the delivery of documents, small packages and standard parcels. The Company’s business is organized into three segments: Mail in the Netherlands, responsible for mail services in the Netherland, documents management, direct marketing and fulfillment services, and operating over 2,600 shop-in-shop post offices; Parcels, providing parcel services in the Netherlands and Belgium for both domestic and cross-border parcel distribution, and International, operating in the postal markets of the United Kingdom, Germany and Italy, and focusing on domestic addressed mail services. The Company also provides marketing and communication services, fulfillment solutions and e-commerce related solutions. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Inyoung Hwang]

    PostNL (PNL) sank 11 percent to 2.48 euros, the biggest decline since Jan. 14. The Amsterdam-based company said sales in the second-quarter were 1.03 billion euros ($1.37 billion), falling short of the 1.04 billion euros predicted by analysts on average. PostNL forecast addressed mail volume in 2013 will drop as much as 11 percent, greater than its previous forecast of no more than 10 percent.

Hot Freight Companies To Own For 2015: Chalmers Ltd (CHR)

Chalmers Limited is an Australia-based company engaged in transport, logistic services, warehousing and container storage, repairs and sales. The Company operated in three segments: Transport, Containers and Property. Transport consists of road transport, predominantly import/export FCL containers and the interface with logistics/ warehousing/hubbing services. Containers represent the empty container park operations concerned with handling, storage, repairs, upgrades, pretrips and so on of empty containers on behalf of shipping and leasing company customers. Property represents the capital investment Chalmers has in freeholds located in Melbourne. The Company’s subsidiaries include Chalmers Industries Pty Ltd, Chalmers (Australia) Pty Ltd and Chalmers Industries (Brisbane) Pty Ltd. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Corinne Gretler]

    Chr. Hansen A/S (CHR) slid 1.7 percent to 186 kroner after Credit Suisse Group AG cut the stock to neutral, the equivalent of hold, from outperform. The brokerage said that profit from its natural-color business remains under pressure. The world’s biggest maker of dairy enzymes cut its full-year sales forecast on July 3 because of lower prices for the red pigment carmine.