AMR Sees Unit Revenue Falling

But costs per available seat mile will also be lower than forecast.
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American Airlines parent

AMR

(AMR)

said fourth-quarter unit revenue will probably decline between 2% and 3% from a year ago.

In a

Securities and Exchange Commission

filing, AMR also said it expects fourth-quarter unit costs of $10.66 for consolidated operations, which include regional flights, and $10.21 for American Airlines' mainline operations. Those estimates are slightly lower than previous guidance. Airlines express unit costs in cost per available seat mile, or CASM.

The airline company said it expected to spend $1.48 a gallon on fuel for the fourth quarter. Fuel cost the airline $1.52 a gallon in October and $1.50 a gallon in November, but will likely decline to $1.41 a gallon in December, the filing said.

AMR expects to end the fourth quarter with total cash of $3 billion, including $477 million in restricted cash.

The expected decline in unit revenue is reflective of industry trends. U.S. carriers are having a hard time raising fares in the face of overcapacity and tough competition.

AMR shares finished Tuesday's session up 2 cents, or 0.2%, at $11.