Thursday, May 02, 2013

FreightCar America notes 1Q earnings loss

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FreightCar America, Inc. Wednesday reported a net loss of $2.6 million, or 22 cents per diluted share, in the first quarter of 2013, on revenue of $87.6 million. That compared with first-quarter 2012 earnings of $9.7 million, or 81 cents per diluted share, on revenue of $219.million. Wall Street analysts had anticipated a net profit of six cents per diluted share in the quarter.

The company said it delivered 1,073 railcars in the quarter, and noted coal car and other freight railcar demand was "expected to remain weak in the near term."

"As I have previously stated, continued uncertainty in the freight railcar market will make 2013 a challenging year," said CEO Ed Whalen. "We remain focused on factors within our control, including: executing our railcar diversification strategy; the successful startup of our Shoals, Ala., facility; improving the results of our Services business; and continuing to prudently manage our costs. I am confident that FreightCar America's market position, strong balance sheet and the execution of our strategic initiatives will enable the company to capitalize on its long-term opportunities and the eventual freight railcar market recovery."

Chicago-based FreightCar America's 1,073 deliveries included 448 new railcars and 625 rebuilt railcars, compared with 2,613 railcars delivered in the first quarter of 2012 and 1,308 railcars delivered in the fourth quarter of 2012.

In a note to clients Thursday, KeyBanc Capital Markets Inc. analysts Steve Barger and Tejas Patel noted the company's rail division "does not provide an outlook, but we believe FY13 could be a challenge for RAIL as its traditional coal car business remains under pressure. Additionally, we point out demand for non-tank car types remain depressed, which in the near term will limit the benefit RAIL might realize from its Shoals facility."

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