Pensions hit FedEx, may weigh on fiscal 2017 results

Tue Jun 21, 2016 6:42pm EDT
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By Nick Carey

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Package delivery company FedEx Corp (FDX.N: Quote) on Tuesday reported a quarterly loss due to mark-to-market pension adjustments and expenses related to acquiring Dutch package delivery company TNT, and said it did not know how those two factors would affect its earnings for the coming fiscal year.

FedEx shares fell more than 1 percent after the news.

Like main rival United Parcel Service Inc (UPS.N: Quote) FedEx is considered a bellwether of U.S. economic activity

Excluding one-off charges, FedEx reported a profit that beat market expectations.

The company gave a fairly robust forecast for its fiscal 2017 year, which assumes continued moderate economic growth.

In a conference call with analysts, the company said it expects the U.S. economy to grow at a rate of 1.8 percent in 2016, below its previous forecast of 2.2 percent. FedEx said it expects consumer spending to lead U.S. economic growth of 2.4 percent in 2017.

When asked by analysts what issues in the upcoming U.S. presidential election concern the company most, Chief Executive Fred Smith said "we have a hard time putting up a list of the things that don't concern us giving the two candidates positions," especially "the anti-trade rhetoric."

"Hopefully, after the election cooler heads will prevail," he said.   Continued...

A Federal Express truck on delivery is pictured in downtown Los Angeles, California October 29, 2014. REUTERS/Mike Blake