GATX profit drops 32%

Posted April 22, 2010 at 9:18 a.m.

By Kiah Haslett |
Rail and transportation leasing company GATX Corp., said first-quarter
profits dropped 32 percent from a year ago, due to a decline in its
specialty division and the idling of steamships during winter months.

Net income was $18.7 million, or 40 cents per diluted share, compared
with $27.6 million or 56 cents a year ago. Shares in the Chicago-based
company were down 1.5 percent in early trading on the news.

Specialty leasing profit was down 47.4 percent to $12.1 million. Marine profit was down 91.7 percent to $0.4 million.

“Results in specialty in the first quarter were in-line with our expectations, as our marine joint ventures continue to operate in weak markets. American Steamship Co. started its sailing season in recent weeks and is expecting improved operating results in 2010 due to an increase in iron ore demand,” Kenney said.

Profit from rail increased 14 percent to $49.3 million. Rail’s North American fleet totaled approximately 109,000 cars, and fleet utilization was 96 percent. Competition among rail lessors is tight, resulting in downward pressure on renewal rates.

However, Brian A. Kenney, president and chief executive officer of GATX, said the results were consistent with company expectations and the full-year earnings for 2010 remained unchanged.


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