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FedEx misses on earnings and slashes full-year guidance, citing slowing global trade — stock falls

Key Points
  • The logistics company lowered its full-year 2019 guidance for the second time to a range of $15.10 to $15.90, compared with the forecast $15.97.
  • FedEx reported earnings per share and revenue below expectations for the third quarter.
  • The company's chief financial officer cited "weaker global trade growth trends" for the decline in revenue.
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Shares of FedEx dropped more than 5 percent after the bell Tuesday following disappointing fiscal third-quarter results. The logistics company also slashed its full-year earnings guidance for the second time since December, as it continues to struggle in the face of slowing global trade.

Here's how the company did compared with what Wall Street expected:

  • Earnings per share: $3.03 vs. $3.11 expected , according to analysts surveyed by Refinitiv.
  • Revenue: $17.01 billion vs. $17.67 billion expected, according to analysts surveyed by Refinitiv.

FedEx's earnings were down from $3.72 a year earlier, while revenue rose from $16.5 billion. The company issued weak full-year 2019 earnings per share guidance: between $15.10 and $15.90 compared with a forecast of $15.97, according to analysts surveyed by Refinitiv. This is the second time FedEx has slashed its full-year earnings outlook.

FedEx falls after missing on earnings and revenue
FedEx falls after missing on earnings and revenue

The company said it expects fiscal fourth-quarter earnings per share between $4.58 and $5.38, compared to the estimated $5.39.

"Slowing international macroeconomic conditions and weaker global trade growth trends continue, as seen in the year-over-year decline in our FedEx Express international revenue," said Alan B. Graf Jr., FedEx executive vice president and chief financial officer.

CEO Frederick W. Smith acknowledged that the fiscal third-quarter results were "below our expectations" and said the company is focused on ways to improve its performance in the future.

"Our investments in innovation, network infrastructure and automation will increase our competitiveness and drive long-term earnings growth," Smith said. "FedEx built and operates the preeminent global parcel and logistics network, and we have a lengthy track record of success."

Shares of competitor UPS also fell more than 1 percent after hours.

On the company's earnings call, FedEx addressed the threat of Amazon in the shipping space. President and Chief Financial Officer Rajesh Subramaniam said Amazon accounted for less than 1.3 percent of FedEx's total revenue for the 12-month period ended December 31, 2018. 

"Nor is Amazon a threat to our future growth," said Subramaniam.