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EPS ex-items of $0.36 was in line with our estimate but $0.04 above consensus. The most important takeaways, in our view: demand trends into 3Q12 appear ok, and LUV is likely to remain disciplined on capacity growth in 2013 (likely no or minimal growth on a y/y basis). LUV’s aversion to fare increases makes pricing airfares difficult when LUV, still the largest airline in the U.S., is adding capacity.
UNP reported 2Q:12 EPS of $2.10/shr vs. Cons. of $1.96 and our $2.02 estimate. UNP did not highlight any one-time gains in the qtr. but Other expenses were lower than we expected by $30M or $0.04/shr which may reflect a casualty/safety accrual benefit. While rev. was light of our expectations and yields decelerated more than we expected, yields still remained at the high end of the group and cost control/margin improvement remained exceptional; we have an upward bias to numbers pending this morning’s call. UNP remains our favorite rail stock for its mix of pricing, productivity and long-term volume growth.
WERN reported in line with Cons. and $0.01 below our est. Rev., EBIT and EPS grew 1%, 9% and 11% y/y, each decelerated from 1Q and breaking WERN’s streak of 9 straight qtrs. We have reduced our C12-13 EPS estimates by 4% and 3% to $1.59 and $1.80 (now slightly below prior Cons.) to reflect weaker utilization. On the positive side, yield growth remains firm and we continue to see long-term market share potential for large TL carriers. While near-term TL sentiment remains weak given macro concerns, we remain bullish on the group and retain our Outperform rating on WERN.
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