Greenbrier Cos. (GBX) warned it expects to post a surprise fiscal fourth-quarter operating loss on lower-than-forecast revenue, as it also announced it received $200 million in orders for 3,000 new railcars.
The railcar manufacturer's refurbishment and parts and marine segments dragged on the latest quarter's results, President and Chief Executive William Furman said. It announced last month discussions to cancel, modify or postpone contracts representing more than 85% of its marine backlog.
Greenbrier had benefited from cost-cutting of late and in its third quarter swung to an unexpected profit as margins surged. Freight demand has picked up from last year's woeful levels as the economy has improved.
For the period ended Aug. 31, the company expects to report a loss of 15 cents to 20 cents a share, excluding a 50-cent gain related to the deconsolidation of its former TrentonWorks unit. It sees revenue of about $185 million.
Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters most recently forecast earnings excluding items of 8 cents on $222 million in revenue.
Meanwhile, the company expects the new orders, which followed $130 million in contracts the company announced last month, to have a "meaningful positive impact" in 2011.
The orders--for double-stack intermodal platforms, covered hopper cars and railcars for the European market--are expected to be delivered this and next year. Contract woes have weighed heavily on the company. In December,it agreed to at least halve a $1.2 billion agreement with General Electric Co. (GE) that had accounted for most of its backlog.
Greenbrier shares closed Friday at $13.26 and were inactive premarket. The stock has gained 28% this year.
-By Matt Jarzemsky, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2240; firstname.lastname@example.org