Southwest Airlines sees profits rise in second quarter

Southwest Airlines sees profits rise in second quarter

Southwest Airlines has reported second quarter 2011 net income of $161 million, or $.21 per diluted share, compared to net income of $112 million, or $.15 per diluted share, for second quarter 2010.

Operating income was $207 million for second quarter 2011, compared to $363 million for second quarter 2010.

The 2011 results include the results of AirTran since the May 2nd, 2011, acquisition date.

Excluding special items in both periods, second quarter 2011 net income was $121 million, or $.15 per diluted share, compared to $216 million, or $.29 per diluted share, for second quarter 2010.

Southwest Airlines chairman, Gary Kelly, stated: “With energy prices surging, and Brent crude oil near $120 a barrel, significant revenue growth was critical to achieve second quarter 2011 operating income of $276 million and net income of $121 million (both excluding special items).

“Record load factors and record passenger yields resulted in a record $3.9 billion in passenger revenues. Still, with our economic fuel costs rising 72 percent, our year-over-year revenue growth could not keep pace.

“However, total operating revenues of $4.1 billion, another record, is a notable accomplishment.

“Southwest Airlines celebrated a momentous milestone this quarter with the closing of our AirTran acquisition, and it couldn’t have come at a more critical time with volatile fuel prices and economic uncertainty.

“We have the opportunity to optimize AirTran’s flight schedule to boost its profitability.

“Ultimately, integrating their network into Southwest’s provides even more substantial opportunities to boost combined revenues and profits.

“The acquisition has the dual benefit of positioning the Company for future growth in an improving economic environment or cushioning it against worsening economic conditions.

“As we undertake the multi-year effort to successfully integrate AirTran into Southwest Airlines, we will continue to focus on our safe, efficient, and reliable operations; strong Culture; and outstanding Customer Service.”

AirTran became a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Company on May 2nd, 2011.