JetBlue says it set profit record for 2013

By David Jonas
JetBlue Airways for 2013 said it posted record fourth-quarter and full-year profits of $47 million and $168 million, respectively.

Extending a 15-quarter profitability streak, the fourth-quarter result compares with a $1 million net profit reported for the year-earlier period.

Passenger revenue increased 9.3% for the year, to about $5 billion, and 14% for the fourth quarter.

Other healthy fourth-quarter revenue metrics included 5% and 6% increases in passenger unit revenue and yield, respectively.

The average one-way passenger fare in the fourth quarter jumped nearly 9% to almost $169. CFO Mark Powers during a Wednesday conference call also noted that fourth-quarter ancillary revenue totaled $24 per passenger, up 18% year over year.

According to JetBlue President Robin Hayes, the revenue environment in the first quarter of 2014 "is strong." The carrier expects to increase first-quarter capacity between 2.5% and 4.5%, and as much as 7% for full-year 2014.

But first-quarter financial performance already has been plagued by airline-unfriendly weather in the Northeast this month.

JetBlue said it canceled about 1,800 flights in early January, amounting to an estimated $45 million revenue reduction and an approximately $30 million hit to operating income.

Source: Business Travel News
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