Continental’s results improve with $66 million 1st quarter net loss
Despite double-digit increase in revenue Continental Airlines posted a net loss of $66 million in the first quarter, an improvement over the $186 million net loss in the same quarter 2005.
In the last quarter the Houston-based airline reported a quarterly operating profit of $11 million, from an operating loss of $173 million a year ago. Revenue was up 17.6 percent to $2.95 billion from $2.50 billion. Revenue from cargo, mail and other operations rose 8.1 percent to $107 million from $99 million. Cargo ton-miles flown, a measure that reflects volume and distance traveled, increased 1.2 percent to 263 million.
The airline said its fuel costs and related taxes in the first quarter jumped 40.6 percent to $661 million from $470 million in the first quarter 2005.
During the quarter, Continental recorded net special items of $20 million, consisting of a $26 million charge for the cumulative effect of an accounting change related to the liability for fair value of restricted stock units, a $14 million credit associated with all officers surrendering their restricted stock units that otherwise would have paid out in the quarter, a $15 million settlement charge related to lump-sum pension payments to retiring pilots, and a $7 million net expense reversal related primarily to negotiated settlements on three leased MD-80 grounded aircraft.
The airline ended the first quarter with more than $2 billion in unrestricted cash and short-term investments.