Payment provider Cass sees COVID-related dip in Q1 invoices

unidentified truck on road

Invoice payment and information services provider Cass Information Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CASS) reported a 7.5% year-over-year decline in transportation-related invoice volumes during the first quarter of 2020.

Total revenue was basically flat year-over-year at $38.1 million, but net income declined 7.6% to $7.5 million, or $0.52 per share.

Key Performance Indicators

The St. Louis-based company attributed the declines to COVID-19, lower interest rates and weaker energy prices.

From the press release, “With manufacturing companies representing an important component of the transportation customer base, the previously reported contraction in this sector, combined with the recent effects of COVID-19, created year-over-year trials for the division. However, the customer base remains stable, which should provide a solid foundation for recovery.”

Facility-related (electricity, gas, waste and telecommunications ) payments declined 7% year-over-year, with dollar volume falling 4%. “As with the Transportation division, the customer base in facility-related businesses remains stable, offering optimism about the prospects for a quick recovery,” stated the release.

“By being a reliable business partner, providing financing and flexible terms, and adapting and accommodating as necessary, we not only assist them but secure our future,” stated Cass chairman and CEO Eric H. Brunngraber.

The company declared its regular quarterly dividend of $0.27 per share on April 21. Cass has consistently paid regularly scheduled cash dividends since 1934.

The company publishes the Cass Transportation Index report, which provides an outlook of monthly trends in the freight markets. The company’s shipment and expenditure indexes are derived from the data captured from the more than $28 billion in freight payables on behalf of its clients annually. In total, Cass disburses more than $60 billion annually for its clients.