Profit drops 48% at USFreightways

USFreightways Corp.'s second-quarter profit dropped 48% after the carrier reduced the value of assets at the freight-management unit it's considering selling, USF Worldwide. Net income fell to $5.94 million from $11.4 million a year earlier, the company said. Sales rose a half-percent to $626.7 million from $623.9 million. However, profit at USFreightways' trucking units rose 1.4% to $30 million on

USFreightways Corp.'s second-quarter profit dropped 48% after the carrier reduced the value of assets at the freight-management unit it's considering selling, USF Worldwide.

Net income fell to $5.94 million from $11.4 million a year earlier, the company said. Sales rose a half-percent to $626.7 million from $623.9 million. However, profit at USFreightways' trucking units rose 1.4% to $30 million on a 2.6% increase in sales to $503.7 million.

The company took $4.5 million in expenses to write down the value of USF Worldwide, a provider of services such as the management of air-freight shipments. USFreightways said it hired Morgan Stanley to advise it on a possible sale of the unprofitable unit, whose pretax loss widened to $9.1 million from $2.9 million as sales fell 16% to $55.5 million.

"The results of the second quarter for our operations, other than USF Worldwide, are encouraging, but we continue to be affected by the current sluggish economy," CEO Samuel Skinner said. "There are indications that the economy is showing a slight recovery, as is evidenced by increases in both tonnage and shipment volumes second quarter over first quarter this year, and also second quarter 2002 over second quarter 2001.

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