It was another quarter in the red for American Airlines' parent company, AMR Corp.
The Fort Worth-based carrier posted a $97 million loss in the fourth quarter, compared to a $344 million loss in the same quarter in 2009. Revenues grew 10 percent to $5.58 billion in the quarter.
The fourth-quarter loss was less than Wall Street analysts had predicted. Excluding a one-time charge of $28 million to write-down routes in Colombia, the company lost $69 million or 21 cents a share. Analysts had estimated a 33 cents a share loss for AMR this quarter.
For its fiscal year 2010, AMR had a loss of $471 million, a significant improvement over its $1.47 billion loss in fiscal year 2009.
AMR said it expects its capacity at American and its regional carrier, American Eagle, to increase by 4.3 percent in 2011. The domestic mainline network will be up 1.0 percent while international routes will grow by 7.7 percent as American adds several new international flights including service from Los Angeles to Shanghai and New York's JFK airport to Tokyo-Haneda.
The carrier also announced on Wednesday that it will acquire two Boeing 777-300ERs and the aircraft are expected to be delivered in late 2012.
"In 2011, American will continue to enhance its own network and expand its relationship with quality carriers in the markets that are important to our customers," AMR chief executive Gerard Arpey said in a news release. "American is well positioned to capitalize on the opportunities unfolding in the marketplace. While the road forward is not without challenges, as we begin 2011, we are enthusiastic about the possibilities we see ahead.”
Fuel continues to be a concern as AMR said it plans to pay an average of $2.62 per gallon in the first quarter of 2011 and $2.67 per gallon for 2011. The average system price of jet fuel was $2.32 per gallon in 2010.
The company will hold a conference call with analysts at 1 p.m. CDT. to discuss more details of its earnings report.