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Small business demand pushes up UPS profits in Q1

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NEW YORK: Small businesses in the United States have fueled delivery demand, helping UPS post better-than-expected profits and revenues for the first quarter of the year.

This sent the company’s stock to an all-time high on Tuesday.

UPS is one of the few companies to have taken advantage of the pandemic, with demand for delivery increasing as more people stay at home and shop online.

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But even with more people vaccinated and leaving, the company said it expects demand for delivery to continue this year as more businesses open up and need to ship goods.

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Plus, consumers have more money in their pocket to spend thanks to government stimulus checks. UPS said daily volume jumped more than 14% in the first three months of the year compared to the same period a year ago.

The Atlanta-based company reported net income of US $ 4.79 billion, up nearly 400% from the same period last year.

But much of those gains come from a US $ 2.5 billion retirement benefit tied to the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, which protects large employers from the insolvency of their pension plans. This reduced the company’s pension liability by US $ 6.4 billion.

Adjusted profit, which excludes one-time gains or losses, was $ 2.77 per share, far exceeding Wall Street’s forecast of $ 1.67, according to Zacks Investment Research.

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Total revenue climbed 27 percent to US $ 22.91 billion, also exceeding expectations.

UPS has also supplied COVID-19 vaccines around the world, many of which must be kept in freezers. So far, the company said it has shipped 196 million COVID-19 vaccines worldwide.

Shares of United Parcel Service., Which nearly doubled last year, hit a record US $ 197.28 on Tuesday morning.

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