Major US Airlines Projected to Report Record Revenue for 4th Quarter and Full Year 2012

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By the end of this week, AirlineFinancials.com  LLC is projecting the seven largest US airlines will have collectively reported $152 million in profits from $33.3 billion in revenue for the 4th quarter. This will be record industry revenue for any 4th quarter and the 3rd consecutive year of 4th quarter profits after 10 years of losses. American and United were the only two airlines to report a loss and not have record revenue for the 4th quarter.

For full year 2012, AirlineFinancials.com LLC projects these seven airlines will collectively report $3.7 billion in profits from a record $140 billion in revenues. For the first time since the 1990’s, excluding American, every airline will have annual profits for at least three consecutive years. American has not reported an annual profit since 2007.
For the year, every airline will report record revenues with four of the seven also reporting record annual profits. Unfortunately for the industry, these records come with a paltry 2.6% profit margin which is 50% less than industry margins were in the later 1990’s.
Since 2001 –year of the tragic 911 attacks– in spite of the last three years of record revenues and profits, the industry has accumulated a staggering $23 billion in net losses! This compares to $23 billion in accumulated net profits for the six years prior to 2001.
Individual airline projections for fourth quarter 2012-
Projections exclude special items and one-time charges
  • United (NYSE: UAL) –                      $146 million loss from $8.8 billion revenue
  • Delta (NYSE: DAL) –                        $239 million profit from $8.7 billion revenue**
  • American (AAMRQ) –                     $  88 million loss from $5.9 billion revenue*
  • Southwest (NYSE: LUV) –                $46 million profit from $4.2 billion revenue**
  • US Airways (NYSE: LCC) –               $38 million profit from $3.3 billion revenue**
  • JetBlue (NASDAQ: JBLU) –                 $5 million profit from $1.2 billion revenue**
  • Alaska (NYSE: ALK) –                         $58 million profit from $1.2 billion revenue**
 
* Reported last week
** Record revenue for fourth quarter
Individual airline projections for full year 2012-
Projections exclude special items and one-time charges
  • United (UAL) –                      $647 million profit from $37.2 billion revenue
  • Delta (DAL) –                        $ 1.7 billion profit from $36.8 billion revenue**
  • American (AAMRQ) –          $130 million loss from $24.9 billion revenue*
  • Southwest LUV) –                $400 million profit from $17.1 billion revenue
  • US Airways (LCC) –            $528 million profit from $13.8 billion revenue**
  • JetBlue (JBLU) –                  $137 million profit from $5.0 billion revenue**
  • Alaska (ALK) –                     $352 million profit from $4.7 billion revenue**
 
* Reported last week
** Record profit for year
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AirlineFinancials.com LLC is a globally recognized company that provides airline industry data, analysis and consulting services
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