Analyst Lowers Earnings Estimates on 17 Carriers

Pricing pressures have increased throughout the trucking industry and, the Stifel Nicolaus report suggests, there is too much capacity chasing too little freight. Adding the rapid rise of diesel fuel prices which the analyst firm feels cannot be fully recovered due to the lag between carriers paying higher costs and refreshing their surcharge rates, and the result is it is lowering earnings estimates for 17 of the 28 companies it covers.

Stifel Nicolaus' calendar year estimates for ABF are unchanged at $2.30 per share. Con-way is also unchanged at $3.36 per share. The analysts are holding the Saia estimate at $1.42 and also holding UPS at $4.16. Vitran is expected to remain at $1.10. It held its estimate for YRC at $2.38 per share for the calendar year.

Falling in Stifel Nicolaus' estimates are Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad, dropping two cents to $5.18 per share for the calendar year; Canadian National, down two cents to $3.15; Canadian Pacific, off four cents to $3.98; Celadon, down a penny to $0.59; CSX, off five cents to $2.46; Heartland Express, down a penny to $0.78; Marten Transport, down three cents to $0.67; Norfolk Southern, off 12 cents to $3.62; Old Dominion Freight Line, down a penny to $1.89; Universal Truckload Services, off a penny to $1.13; and Werner Enterprises, also of a penny to $1.09.

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