P.A.M. Transportation Services reported a net loss of $2.2 million in Q4, a plunge into the red that left its net income at $18.4 million for the full year, per an earnings report.
Its truckload operating ratio, excluding fuel surcharges, was 103.7% for the quarter and 97.7% for the year, reflecting a troubled freight market souring the industry.
President and CEO Joe Vitiritto also cited United Auto Workers strikes in 2023 as a drain on P.A.M.’s large base of auto manufacturers and suppliers. “Unlike previous UAW strikes, the approach taken in the 2023 strike was impactful to the majority of our auto customer base,” he said in an earnings report.
“While the strike ended by mid-November, the negative impact carried on through the typical holiday shutdowns with no post-strike surge in automotive business that we have sometimes experienced after past UAW strikes,” Vitiritto said.
That’s come as auto sales have failed to return to levels seen before the COVID-19 pandemic and auto loan balances increased by $12 billion in Q4, per Federal Reserve banking system data.
P.A.M.’s largest customer in recent years was General Motors, and about 31% of its revenues in 2022 were tied to transportation services for the auto industry, per a 2023 annual report. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, now part of Stellantis, also was one of its biggest customers, too, during those years.