NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Southwest Airlines (LUV) - Get Southwest Airlines Co. Report were gaining 5.8% to $44.26 Thursday after the airline beat analysts' estimates for earnings in the fourth quarter.

Southwest reported earnings of 59 cents a share for the fourth quarter, beating analysts' estimates of 55 cents a share for the quarter. Revenue increased 4.5% year over year to $4.63 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts' estimates of $4.59 billion.

The airline said that passenger revenue rose 2.6% compared to the year-ago quarter. Southwest also announced that fuel costs fell 14.1% year over year to an average of $2.62 a gallon in the fourth quarter inclusive of settled hedges.

Exclusive Report:Jim Cramer's Best Stocks for 2015

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

TheStreet Recommends

TheStreet Ratings team rates SOUTHWEST AIRLINES as a Buy with a ratings score of A+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate SOUTHWEST AIRLINES (LUV) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: LUV Ratings Report

LUV data by YCharts

Image placeholder title

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.