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Rail News: Financials

Greenbrier boosts rail-car backlog, increases earnings in FY2006


The Greenbrier Cos. capped off a strong fiscal year by increasing net earnings in the fiscal fourth quarter. During the period ending Aug. 31, the company’s net earnings rose 16 percent to $12.3 million compared with similar FY2005 data.

In addition, Greenbrier’s rail-car backlog as of Aug. 31 totaled 14,700 units valued at $1 billion compared with Aug. 31, 2005’s backlog of 9,600 units valued at $550 million and Aug. 31, 2004’s backlog of 13,100 units valued at $760 million.

However, revenue was flat at $265 million and car orders fell by 100 units to 3,200 units compared with fourth-quarter FY2005.

“While deliveries for the quarter and gains on equipment sales were lower than previously anticipated, this was principally due to timing differences, as some lease syndication and equipment sales activities were deferred,” said Greenbrier Senior Vice President and Treasurer Mark Rittenbaum in a prepared statement.

For the full fiscal-year 2006, Greenbrier’s net earnings jumped 33 percent to a record $39.6 million compared with similar FY2005 data. The company reduced the average age of its lease fleet from 22 years to 16 years and extended the average lease term from 2.7 years to 3.3 years by adding new covered hoppers, scrap-steel mill gondolas, Auto-Max® cars and automotive carriers to its fleet and boosting asset usage, Greenrbier said.

But rail-car deliveries declined by 1,800 units to 11,400 units compared with FY2005.

“Fiscal 2006 was … our second-consecutive year of record earnings and numerous strategic accomplishments,” said President and Chief Executive Officer William Furman. “We have taken several steps to bolster our growth, increase our profitability and competitive positioning, and diversify the business.”

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