AP reported that Horizon Lines Inc. said its third-quarter profit rose, aided by a large tax benefit.
For the quarter ended Sept. 24, the company reported net income of $52.9 million, or $1.57 per share, versus prior-year profit of $2.8 million, or 14 cents per share. Revenue rose to $304.7 million from $289.1 million in the year earlier period. Horizon elected to pay an alternative tonnage tax instead of federal corporate income tax on qualifying shipping activities, which cut its income tax bill by $39.4 million, or $1.17 per share for the quarter. Excluding the total tax savings, adjusted net income totaled $14.3 million or 43 cents per share.
Wall Street expected profit of 59 cents per share, according to Thomson Financial, on projected sales of $307.3 million.
The company forecast fourth-quarter operating revenue of $287 million to $292 million, earnings before interest and other items between $39 million to $41 million, and earnings per share of 21 cents to 23 cents per share excluding the tax savings, and 31 cents to 33 cents per share with the savings.
For the full year, Horizon forecast revenue of roughly $1.16 billion, earnings before items between $163 million to $165 million, and earnings per share of 92 cents to 94 cents per share excluding tax savings, and of $2.19 to $2.21 per share including the tax factor. Previous guidance, issued earlier this month, called for earnings of $2.13 to $2.18 per share, including the tonnage tax election
Horizon shares lost 99 cents, or 4.5 percent, at $21 in morning trading on the New York Stock Exchange.