ESTERO — The stock of car rental giant Hertz rose significantly after it reported a profitable quarter.
Shares of Hertz (symbol: HTZ) closed at $9.54, up 12%, Tuesday. The Estero-based company has been bedeviled by accounting and operational problems since it moved its headquarters to Southwest Florida from New Jersey three years ago.
“By fundamentally improving our fleet management and reducing costs throughout the business, we delivered on our expected outcome for the fourth quarter and the full year, despite a highly competitive pricing environment,” says John Tague, president and CEO, in a statement.
For the quarter ending Dec. 31, Hertz reported net income of $70 million on revenues of $2.4 billion. That compares with a net loss of $234 million on revenues of $2.5 billion in the same quarter in 2014. Revenues were lower in part because of the unfavorable currency exchanges, the company says.
The outlook for Hertz remains challenging. “Looking ahead, we continue to see soft pricing in the U.S. rental car market in the first quarter 2016 as well as continued weakness in upstream oil and gas markets affecting equipment rental, both of which are reflected in our outlook for 2016,” Tague says in the statement. “In this environment, we will continue to focus internally on improving cost and quality as part of our commitment to our three-to-five year margin improvement plan.”