Trucking Activity Fuels TravelCenter Earnings

Trucking Activity Fuels TravelCenter Earnings

More trucks on the road mean more cups of coffee sold at TravelCenters of America, not to mention more meals, deals on merchandise and gallons of diesel.

Sales of fuel and goods and services at the national truck stop chain jumped 33.3 percent in the second quarter from a year ago, rising to $1.5 billion.

That powered a net profit of $1.2 million, compared with a $15 million loss a year ago and a $41.2 million loss in the first quarter of 2010.

Fuel sales leaped 43.6 percent to $1.2 billion, compared with $840.6 million a year ago. Sales at the pump were up 7.3 percent from the first quarter.

The company sold 486.8 million gallons of fuel in the second quarter. TravelCenters operates 229 sites, including 166 TA truck stops and 63 Petro truck stops.

Total non-food sales increased 5.8 percent year-over-year and 14.8 percent from the first quarter to $300.4 million, "as a result of increased trucking activity," TA said.

Same site fuel sales were up 7.1 percent year-over-year, the third straight quarterly increase. That growth rate showed signs of slowing, however.

In the first quarter, same site fuel sales were up 9.1 percent from the previous year, following a 2.4 percent increase in the fourth quarter of 2009.

-- Contact William B. Cassidy at wcassidy@joc.com.