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P.A.M. Transportation shares rally to new high

Shares of the thinly traded P.A.M. Transportation Services Inc. hit a 52-week high on Tuesday (March 11) rising 3% to $23 on heavier than usual trading in the morning session.

P.A.M. share price has risen more than 100% in past 15 months from $11.03 in March 2011, and a low of $8.85 hit in December 2012.

The Tontitown-based trucking firm recently reported fourth quarter net profits of $1.295 million, erasing a loss of $311,010 reported in the prior-year period. Company management was pleased with the fourth quarter results, even though they noted unfavorable weather curbed the results during December.

Analysts believe an improving economy is benefiting truckers like P.A.M. Transportation.

"We continue to see a favorable demand outlook amidst an expected uptick in U.S. imports, rising manufacturing volumes and an improved trucking supply/demand balance," Deutsche Bank analysts noted Friday (March 7).

Although it lowered the industry's first quarter estimates by 11% on average, Deutsche Bank expects manufacturing freight to rebound as the nation thaws out.

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"With significant freight delayed during January/February, we believe March has the potential to be a particularly good month for transportation companies if the weather holds,” the analyst notes.

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