Matson Navigation’s fourth quarter operating profit fell 55 percent to $13 million as slumping trans-Pacific rates offset improved volume to Guam, parent Alexander & Baldwin said.
Matson’s Hawaii container traffic fell 6 percent to 35,000 20-foot-equivalent units in the quarter, which included one less week than the comparable quarter of 2010. Hawaii auto volume dropped 1 percent to 19,700 units.
The poor result came at a tough time for Matson: A&B announced plans in December to split off Matson’s transportation and logistics businesses into a separately traded company in mid-2012.
Container volume rose 13 percent in Matson’s CLX1 trans-Pacific service. Guam volume jumped 28 percent to 5,100 TEUs, aided by competitor Horizon Lines’ mid-November exit from that trade lane.
The full-year operating profit fell 38 percent to $74.1 million while revenue rose 6 percent to $1.08 billion. Hawaii container volume rose 2 percent to 140,000 TEUs. Hawaii auto volume slipped 1 percent to 81,000 units. Container volume from the company’s CLX1 service fell 2 percent to 59,000 TEUs. Guam volume was flat at 15,200 TEUs.
“Improved performance in Guam was more than offset by significantly lower results for CLX1 due to lower trans-Pacific freight rates and higher operating costs, and the impact on Hawaii container volume of one less week recorded in the quarter compared to last year,” the company said.
Matson Logistics posted a $600,000 fourth quarter net loss as revenue declined 5 percent to $92.8 million due to lower highway volume, reduced demand at the company’s West Coast warehouses, and weaker international intermodal volume following the discontinuance last summer of Matson’s second China-Long Beach service.
Full-year profit for Matson Logistics fell 5 percent to $5 million. Revenue rose 9 percent to $386.4 million.