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Major Airlines in U.S. expected to Report Record Revenues for 2012

The only two of the major airlines in the U.S. not to report a profit for the fourth quarter were American and United Airlines

The only two of the major airlines in the U.S. not to report a profit for the fourth quarter were American and United Airlines

January 23, 2013 –¬†Industry experts expect the major airlines in the U.S. to report record revenues 2012. Collectively seven airlines in the U.S. are expected to report profits of more than $3.7 billion from more than $140 billion in revenue. For only the first time since the mid 1990s, excluding American Airlines, every airline will post annual profits for a minimum of the last three straight years. American has not recorded a profit in any year since 2007.

The only two of the major airlines in the U.S. not to report a profit for the fourth quarter were American and United Airlines.

Record revenues will be reported for all seven of the airlines, but four out of the seven will also report annual profits that are new records. However, for the airline industry, the new records come with a profit margin of just 2.6%, which is nearly 50%, less than the margins for the industry were back in the 1990s.

Since 2001, the year of the 9/11 attacks, the industry, despite the past three years of record profits from record revenues, has accumulated net losses of over $23 billion, this in comparison to accumulated profits of $23 billion in a six-year period prior to 2001.

Fourth quarter projections

United is expected to have $8.8 billion in revenue and a $146 million loss. American is expected to have revenues of $5.9 billion with a net loss of $88 million. Delta expects a profit of $239 million on $8.7 billion in revenues, while Southwest is expecting profits of $46 million thanks to $4.2 million in revenues.

Full Year projections

United will report a profit of $647 million, Delta $1.7 billion, Southwest $400 million, US Airways $528 million, JetBlue $137 million and Alaska Air $352 million. American is expected to post the only loss of the group at $130 million.

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