Matson Expecting Improved Trade During 2nd Half of Year

Image: Matson Inc.

The ocean transportation and logistics business segments for Hawaii-based shipping company Matson performed well despite being down from the high level pandemic-driven demand of the last two years, company Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Matt Cox said April 19.

“Within ocean transportation, our China service generated lower year-over-year volume and freight rates, which were the primary contributors to the year-over-year decline in our consolidated operating income,” he said.

In the first quarter, retail consumers managed their inventories more conservatively in the backdrop of weakening consumer demand, rising interest rates and economic uncertainty, he said. 

“As such, we expect our CLX (China-Long Beach Express) and CLX+ services in the second quarter to reflect freight demand levels below normalized conditions with lower year-over-year volumes and rates,” Cox said. “Absent an economic ‘hard landing’ in the U.S., we continue to expect improved trade dynamics in the second half of 2023 as the Transpacific marketplace transitions to a more normalized level of demand.”  

In preliminary results released April 19, Matson anticipates Q1 operating income for ocean transportation of $23 million to $28 million and logistics operating income of $10 million to $11million, Cox said, adding that the net income for Q1 2023 to be $29.3 to $33.8 million.  

A first quarter earnings call for the Honolulu-based company is planned for May 4.

By Karen Robes Meeks