FedEx clears $20 billion in quarterly sales for first time, earnings double as COVID-19 juices shipments

As the holiday package crunch arrives after a year of increasing online purchases during COVID-19 lockdowns, FedEx Corp. on Thursday reported record quarterly sales that topped $20 billion for the first time and earnings that more than doubled.

FedEx FDX, +1.19% reported that fiscal second-quarter earnings rose 114% to $1.23 billion, or $4.55 a share, from $2.13 a share a year ago. After adjusting for a pension-plan change and some integration expenses, the company reported earnings of $4.83 a share, up from $2.51 a share a year ago.

Revenue jumped 19% to $20.6 billion from $17.3 billion a year ago. Analysts on average expected adjusted earnings of $4.01 a share on sales of $19.43 billion, according to FactSet.

The company declined to offer a specific forecast for the current quarter due to continued uncertainty.

“While the overall environment remains uncertain, we expect earnings growth in the second half of fiscal 2021 driven by the anticipated heightened demand for our services as we continue to execute on our strategic priorities,” Chief Financial Officer Michael Lenz said in Thursday’s announcement.

The stock declined more than 2% in after-hours trading immediately following the release of the results. FedEx shares have nearly doubled amid the boom in shipping this year, gaining 93.5% in 2020 through Thursday’s regular session. The S&P 500 index SPX, +0.58% has gained 14.6% in that time.