Barge operator Kirby Corp.
said its third-quarter profit would miss Wall Street expectations by about 10 percent because of a fall off in refined petroleum shipments and higher fuel prices. Houston-based Kirby, which operates a fleet of barges and towing vessels transporting chemicals
, refined petroleum and agricultural goods on U.S. inland waterways, said in a statement its third-quarter profit would be between 36 cents and 38 cents per share. Wall Street analysts had been expecting Kirby to report a profit of $0.41 cents per share, according to research firm First Call/Thomson Financial. A year earlier it had earned $0.34 cents per share.
Refined product volumes were strong in the first and second quarters, but weakened during the third quarter, the company said. In addition, fuel prices have increased significantly. Kirby also said its diesel engine services business results for the quarter are expected to be below the reported results for the first and second quarters because of soft engine rebuild and rail businesses. The Gulf Coast drilling and offshore supply vessel market has improved, but not to a level offsetting shortfalls in other areas, it said.