Hapag-Lloyd (FSE: HLAG): squeezed out a slightly better operating profit after a full-year of results including its acquisition of United Arab Shipping Company. But the ocean carrier still faces headwinds from fuel prices. The fifth largest ocean carrier reported revenue growth of 15 percent for last year reaching €11.5 billion ($13.6 billion) for the year, with total volumes rising 21 percent to 11.8 million twenty-foot equivalent (teu) for the year. The gains come thanks to the full year of reporting results from the UASC buyout, which closed in mid-2017. If the two had been combined for all of 2017, volumes would have been up 6 percent for the year. Operating profit for the company came in at €1.138 billion for the year, an 8 percent gain and near the upper end of guidance Hapag-Lloyd gave for 2018 results. This despite freight rates dropping 1.5 percent over the year to $1,040 per teu. But fuel prices remain a wildcard for the industry with transport expenses up 18 percent to €9.4 billion amid marine fuel prices rising from $318 per metric ton to $421 per metric ton. Operating margin was also weaker, dropping to 9.9 percent for the year. Fitch says port’s capital spending pl...