Brown trucks everywhere as world shelters, UPS has a big 3Q

UPS, whose brown delivery trucks have become omnipresent on neighborhood streets during the pandemic, said profits and revenue surged in its most recent quarter

ATLANTA — UPS, whose brown delivery trucks have become omnipresent on neighborhood streets during the pandemic, said profits and revenue surged in its most recent quarter.

With so many people getting what they need delivered to the front door, the consolidated average daily volume at UPS jumped 13.5%

Profit jumped 12% to $1.96 billion in the third quarter, or $2.24 per share. Per-share earnings with unusual items removed were $2.28, which is 42 cents more than Wall Street had expected.

Its revenue of $21.24 billion also easily topped analyst projections.

The Atlanta delivery giant reported another gain in the volume of parcels handled. Prices have been roughly constant, with a rise in average price per piece rising for U.S. ground shipments and slipping slightly for express deliveries like next-day air.

“Our results were fueled by continued strong outbound demand from Asia and growth from small and medium-sized businesses,” CEO Carol Tomé said in a statement.

The Atlanta company, like others, is no longer giving forward-looking guidance because of the uncertainty caused by COVID-19 infections globally, which again are on the rise.

The report built on momentum that UPS showed in July, when second-quarter earnings beat expectations and lifted the company’s stock.

UPS shares have nearly doubled since May, reflecting the pickup in business as more consumers have relied on home deliveries. The shares have gained 46% since the beginning of the year, compared to a roughly 5% gain in the S&P 500 index.

On Wednesday before the opening bell, news of surging infections was dominant and shares of UPS, along with FedEx, tumbled with the rest of U.S. markets.

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A portion of this story was generated by Automated Insights (http://automatedinsights.com/ap) using data from Zacks Investment Research. Access a Zacks stock report on UPS at https://www.zacks.com/ap/UPS