Delta Air Lines Earnings Show Big Jump/usair Slightly Higher; Tiger Turns Profit

Article excerpt

Delta Air Lines, one of the nation's strongest carriers, said Thursday that October-December earnings rose more than 65-fold over a year earlier because of higher traffic, lower costs, sale of aircraft and the inclusion of its newly acquired Western Air Lines subsidiary in financial results.

USAir Group, another healthy and expanding airline, said its earnings rose 1.3 percent in the quarter but fell 16 percent for the year, reflecting the fare discounting that hurt the industry during much of 1986.

And Tiger International Inc., parent of air-cargo carrier Flying Tiger Line, said it had posted its first quarterly profit in two years, earning $10.4 million, or 33 cents per share, on revenue of $299.8 million for the three months ended Dec. 31.

In the same period a year ago, Tiger International lost $34.5 million, or $1.13 per share, on revenue of $313.9 million.

Atlanta-based Delta said earnings for its fiscal second quarter totaled a record $125.51 milion or $3.02 a share, compared with $1.88 million or 5 cents a share in the year-earlier period. Revenues totaled $1.197 billion vs. $1.11 billion, a 7 percent increase.

Delta said the results reflected a 37 percent drop in fuel costs, after-tax profits from aircraft sales, an increase in passengers and $675,000 in profits contributed by Western. Delta acquired Western for $860 million in September.

For the six-months ended Dec. 31, Delta said earnings totaled $178.53 million or $4.37 a share, a 469 percent increase over the $31.34 million or 78 cents a share earned in the year-earlier period. Revenue totaled $2.3 billion, a gain of 3 percent.

Washington-based USAir said earnings in the October-December quarter totaled $32.06 million or $1.06 a share, compared with $31.64 million or $1.08 a share a year earlier. Revenue totaled $483.37 million vs. $437.46 million, a 10.5 percent increase.

For the entire year, USAir said earnings totaled $98.35 million or $3.34 a share, compared with $117. …

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