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Matson doubles profit in first quarter

Andrew Gomes
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Matson container ship Matsonia moored at Pier 2 in Honolulu Harbor. Matson reported earning $14.2 million in the first three months of this year.

Matson Inc. doubled its profit in the first quarter despite delivering about the same number of shipping containers to Hawaii.

The Honolulu-based ocean cargo transportation firm reported earning $14.2 million in the first three months of this year, up from $7 million in the same period.

Matson said in a report today that the profit gain was driven largely by a joint-venture that provides stevedoring and terminal services at seven West Coast ports, and an operation that coordinates ground transportation, warehousing and other ancillary cargo services.

The timing of fuel surcharges, lower vessel operating costs and higher container volume in Alaska also contributed to more profit in the first quarter, the company said.

Offsetting the gains were lower cargo volumes in Hawaii, China and Guam.

Overall, company Chairman and CEO Matt Cox said Matson is “off to a good start to this year.”

The company projects that its operating income, which doesn’t include taxes or interest payments on financing, will be “modestly higher” for the full year compared with last year.

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