Delta Air Lines, the world’s biggest airline by revenue, has reported its best quarterly results for a decade as the airline industry continues to rebound from the global downturn.
The US aviation giants cited a rising demand for travel, which increased its yields and allowed it to raise ticket prices. This came despite a rise in operating expenses over the quarter of $317m, partly due to higher fuel costs.
Net profit for the three months to the end of June came in at $467m – the airline’s first quarterly profit in two years – compared with a loss of $257m for the same period a year earlier. Revenue rose $8.2bn compared with $7bn a year ago.
Ticket prices were up 16.7 percent compared with a year ago while costs rose only 5.4 percent, helping the company to generate an operating margin of 11.4 percent, 10.6 percent better than a year ago.
Richard Anderson, chief executive, said: “Delta’s profit this quarter is our best result in a decade and proof that our plan has positioned us well as the economy begins its recovery.”
Passenger revenue increased by 19 percent, or $1.1bn, while cargo revenue rose by 22 percent, or $38m.
The airline also announced a $90m profit sharing scheme for employees.
For the full year, analysts expect Delta to report $1.2bn in net income on sales of about $31.6bn.