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(Reuters) - Delta Air Lines Inc reported better-than-expected profit for the fourth quarter on Thursday, helped by a busy holiday travel season, and forecast even better performance in the current quarter, sending its shares up almost 3 percent in premarket trading.
The No. 2 U. S. carrier forecast total unit revenue, a measurement closely watched by investors, to increase by 2.5 percent to 4.5 percent in the first quarter of 2018.
"We enter 2018 with significant momentum and every entity delivering positive passenger unit revenue for the first time in five years, driven by a robust demand environment and improving business fares," said Delta's President Glen Hauenstein.
Based on that, Atlanta-based Delta raised its full-year profit outlook to between $6.35 and $6.70 per share, well ahead of Wall Street estimates.
The bullish outlook from the airline, the first major U.
Delta's net income for the fourth quarter dipped to $572 million, or 80 cents per share, in the quarter ended Dec. 31, from $622 million, or 84 cents per share, a year earlier.
That included a one-time charge of $150 million due to changes in the U. S. tax code enacted in December. Delta said the new tax law would cut its tax rate to between 22 percent and 24 percent in 2018.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)