Why Copart, Inc. Stock Popped Today

What happened

Shares of Copart Inc. (NASDAQ: CPRT) were up 10.5% as of 1:30 p.m. EST Wednesday after the online vehicle auction services specialist announced stronger-than-expected fiscal first-quarter results.

More specifically, Copart's quarterly revenue climbed 21% year over year to $419.2 million, which translated to adjusted (non-GAAP) earnings of $77.1 million, or $0.33 per diluted share. Copart doesn't provide specific quarterly financial guidance, but both the top and bottom lines were well ahead of investors' expectations for earnings of $0.27 per share on revenue of $377.4 million.

So what

Within Copart's top line, service revenue climbed 21.8% year over year to $374.1 million, while vehicle sales revenue grew 15.8% to just over $45 million.

Copart's operating results also included $35.8 million in abnormal costs related to Hurricane Harvey during the quarter, including temporary storage facilities, subhauler premiums, overtime labor, equipment leases to handle increased volume, and travel and lodging expenses for reassigned employees. Net of the roughly $18.6 million in revenue associated with that increased volume, Copart incurred a pre-tax loss of roughly $17.2 million from the hurricane.

Now what

Even so, that only partially accounts for Copart's top-line outperformance this quarter. And those storm-related losses make its relative earnings beat all the more impressive. So even with shares trading at a 52-week high heading into this report, it's no surprise to see Copart stock rallying even higher Wednesday.

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Steve Symington has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Copart. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.