| United Continental Beats Fourth Quarter Sales, Earnings Forecasts Amid $2.4 Billion Fuel Headwind|
MT NEWSWIRES 6:53 AM ET 1/16/2019
Symbol Last Price Change
|UAL ||81.2 ||0 (0%)|
|QUOTES AS OF 04:00:00 PM ET 01/15/2019 |
06:53 AM EST, 01/16/2019 (MT Newswires) -- United Continental Holdings(UAL) , the parent company of United Airlines, reported higher sales and earnings in its fourth quarter on Wednesday, beating analysts' estimates as it implemented the first year of a strategic plan.
Revenue rose to $10.49 billion during the three months that ended December 31, up from $9.45 billion a year ago, surpassing the $10.34 billion average analyst estimate compiled by Capital IQ. Adjusted earnings per share rose sharply to $2.41 from $1.44 a year earlier, outshining the Street's view of $2.02.
The company, which reported a $2.4 billion year-over-year headwind from fuel, said earlier this year that it expects to increase capacity by 4%-to-6% in 2018 and sees similar growth rates in 2019 and 2020.
It said in its earnings statement on Wednesday that it recovered 98% of the year-over-year increase in fuel prices in 2018. That was helped in part by passenger revenue per available seat mile, which rose by 5% in the fourth quarter.
"United's financial performance is a testament to the successful implementation of the first year of our strategic plan and to the record-setting operational performance," Chief Executive Officer Oscar Munoz said in the statement. "United delivered proof, not just promises in 2018 - even in the face of significant headwinds from higher than expected fuel costs."
Looking ahead to 2019, the company said that it expects adjusted diluted earnings per share to grow year-over-year to between $10.00 to $12.00, compared with a market consensus of $10.95.
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