ARI attributed the results mostly to higher revenue in its manufacturing and leasing segments. Fourth-quarter revenue in the company's manufacturing segment grew 14% to $236.5 million; leased segment revenue soared to $5.1 million from $427,000 a year ago.
"The shipments for tank railcars remained strong, which provided us with a favorable sales mix during the quarter," said ARI President and CEO James Cowan. "Strong tank railcar volumes generated operational leverage and efficiencies that were partially offset by lower shipments of hopper railcars."
The company's 4Q railcar shipments totaled roughly 2,000, including 390 railcars to leased customers.
ARI's full-year 2012 net income also set a company record of $63.8 million, compared with $4.3 million in 2011.
"Overall, we think this was a standout quarter by almost any
measure," said Keybanc Capital Markets Inc. analyst Steve Barger in a note early Thursday to investors. Among the many variables cited by Barger in ARI's annual results: "Manufacturing revenue of $187 million beat our estimate of $167
million, which we think is due to strong mix of tank cars against lower covered hopper deliveries."