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United Airlines Q3 Profit Drops A Third

United Airlines Q3 Profit Drops A Third

2017 10 21

2017 10 21

United Airlines announced a fall in its third quarter net profit to USD$637 million, as weather events disrupted operations.

United cancelled around 8,300 flights during the quarter as severe weather battered southeast Texas, Florida and parts of the Caribbean. Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria caused a Q3 pre-tax income drop of about $185 million as a result of the cancellations.

Net profit in the quarter to end September dropped 34.0 percent from last year’s $965 million.

Operating revenue edged down just 0.4 percent in the quarter to $9.88 billion, but operating expenses jumped 6.0 percent to $8.79 billion as fuel and staff costs both rose. Aircraft fuel costs increased by 12.9 percent to $1.81 billion, while salaries and related costs were up 7.1 percent at $2.81 billion.

Revenue per available seat mile dropped 3.7 percent, but unit cost per available seat mile increased by 3.0 percent.

United flew 39.3 million passengers on its mainline and regional flights during the quarter, up 1.7 percent on the previous year period. Capacity in available seat miles (ASM) terms increased by 3.0 percent, but RPM passenger traffic edged up by just 1.7 percent. The resulting load factor dropped 1.1 percentage points to 84.4 percent.

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