Continental Airlines narrowed its loss in 4Q06 from $43 million, or $0.53 a share to just $26 million, or $0.29 a share. Minus a $22 million ($0.25 a share), one-time charge related to pilots pension plans, the airline reported a loss of just $0.04 a share. Revenue came in at $3.16 billion, an increase of 11% from the earlier year period; Thomson Financial average estimates called for a loss $0.15 cents a share on revenue of $3.16 billion. The loss contrasts with competitors AMR Corp. and Southwest Airlines who both reported profitable fourth quarters. Load factor (percentage of available seats filled) increased 2.1% in the quarter to 80.2%; Continental raised prices 10 times during 2006, another factor contributing to a narrower loss from the previous year quarter.
• Sources: Press Release, Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Reuters
• Related commentary: AMR Posts Q4 Upside Surprise; Southwest Air's Profit Drops on Fuel Costs, There's a Reason There Is No Airline ETF, Why I'm Bullish On Airline Stocks,
• Potentially impacted stocks and ETFs: Continental Airlines (NYSE:CAL), Competitors: AMR Corporation (AMR), Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE:LUV), Delta Air Lines Inc. (DALRQ.PK), Northwest Airlines Corp. (NWACQ.PK), UAL Corp. (UAUA), JetBlue Airways Corp. (NASDAQ:JBLU)
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