Sky Talk

American Airlines says passenger traffic declines slighty in November

American Airlines said its passenger traffic dropped slightly in November, down 0.2 percent as the airline kept its capacity essentially flat.

The Fort Worth-based carrier said its load factor was down 0.3 percentage points to 80.9 percent in November.

American also told investors that it was raising its unit revenue estimates, saying it expected fourth quarter unit revenues to range from down 1 percent to up 1 percent. It had previously told investors it expected unit revenues to be down 2.5 percent to 0.5 percent.

“American’s updated guide this morning, also implies upside to consensus estimates and critically also opens the door to positive unit revenues in Q4 - potentially awarding American the all-important (albeit symbolic) [unit revenue] gold,” J.P. Morgan analyst Jamie Baker wrote in an investor note this morning. Baker raised his fourth quarter earnings estimate to 81 cents a share, up from his previous estimate of 61 cents a share.