American Airlines, unit of AMR ( AMR), announced second-quarter results that missed Wall Street expectations but unlike rival Delta Air Lines ( DAL), the world's largest carrier posted a profit instead of crippling losses. American announced second-quarter net income of $6 million, or 3 cents a share, up from the loss of $75 million, or 47 cents a share, it had a year ago. Excluding all items, which is how Wall Street views the airline, the carrier said it lost $25 million, or 15 cents a share, a big improvement from the loss of $357 million, or $2.26 a share, it had a year ago. That said, American's 15-cent loss was lower than the 10-cent loss expected by Wall Street. "Compared to a year ago, we ran a much more efficient, more productive and smarter airline in the second quarter," said Gerard Arpey, AMR's chairman and CEO. "The progress we have achieved under our turnaround plan, while gratifying, was overwhelmed during the period by the record high fuel prices that afflicted our industry and indeed the entire economy." On an operating basis, excluding all items, the carrier said that it earned $165 million, the best level it has seen in four years and a $360 million improvement from last year's quarter. In reaction, shares of AMR rose 49 cents, or 5.2%, to $9.86. Total revenue came in at $4.83 billion, up 11.7% from last year and better than the $4.74 billion expected by analysts. American said that traffic, a measure of demand, rose 10.4% year-over-year, while capacity, a measure of supply, rose 8.5%. As a result, the company filled 75.7% of its seats in the second quarter, up from 74.4% a year ago. But American had to discount seats to fill them, and revenue per available seat mile, also known as RASM, came in at 8.85 cents, up 1.3% from last year. Revenue yield, a measure of the total money brought in per paying passenger, came in at 11.69 cents, down from 11.74 cents a year ago.