After closing out the third quarter on a strong note with an 8 percent increase in September, the WorkBoat Composite Index gave up 17 points in October, or 1.5 percent.
For the month, losers topped winners by a 2-1 ratio. Big percentage losers included K-Sea Transportation, which dipped almost 40 percent, and American Commercial Lines, which lost about 26 percent in October. K-Sea, in reporting a fiscal first-quarter net loss of 29 cents a share, said it may be in breach of financial covenants by the end of the second or third quarter. The company also cut its dividend by 42 percent. Several analysts responded by downgrading K-Sea.
ACL posted a third-quarter loss of 96 cents a share compared to net income of $1.44 a share a year earlier. Michael P. Ryan, ACL’s president and CEO, stated, “We have not seen a recovery in our most profitable markets, and we have been negatively impacted by the late grain harvest.”