Thursday, January 21, 2010

GATX profit falls in fourth quarter

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Chicago-based GATX Corp. said Thursday it struggled through the "weakest rail market in decades," as it recorded earnings of $21.5 million, or 45 cents per share, for the fourth quarter. That was down 25.6% from $28.9 million, or 58 cents per share, GATX notched in the comparable quarter of 2008. Revenue fell 6.5% to $302.5 million from $323.7 million a year ago.

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GATX said the latest quarter included a tax benefit of 15 cents per share, and a loss on interest rate swaps of 5 cents per share. Excluding those items, the company logged earnings per share of 35 cents, roughly in line with analyst estimates of 36 cents per share based on anticipated revenue of $281.7 million.

President and CEO Brian A. Kenney noted 4.1% remains underutilized at present.  

Shares of GATX fell roughly 5% in early Thursday trading, but were recovering during early afternoon activity, trading down 3.7%.