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SkyWest (SKYW) Incurs Loss in Q4, Revenues Plunge 21% Y/Y

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SkyWest (SKYW - Free Report) incurred a loss of 93 cents per share in the fourth quarter of 2020, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 87 cents. In the year-ago period, the company reported earnings of $1.43 per share. Fourth-quarter results were hurt by depressed travel demand, thanks to the coronavirus pandemic.

Quarterly revenues of $589.6 million surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $530 million, but declined 20.7% year over year. The COVID-19 pandemic caused a significant cut in the number of scheduled flights, thereby inducing the year-over-year decline in the top line.
 
Revenues from flying agreements (contributing 96.6% to the top line) decreased 21.4% from the year-ago quarter’s figure. Total expenses (on a reported basis) were nearly flat year over year at $617.31 million. While direct operating costs reduced due to lesser number of flights operated, aircraft maintenance and depreciation expenses increased. The airline, which carried 48.9% less passengers during the fourth quarter, reported a 27.4% decline in block hours (a measure of aircraft utilization). Passenger load factor (percentage of seats filled by passengers) deteriorated 26.7 percentage points to 55.5% in the December quarter due to shrinkage in air-travel demand.

SkyWest, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

SkyWest, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

SkyWest, Inc. price-consensus-eps-surprise-chart | SkyWest, Inc. Quote

Liquidity

SkyWest, currently carrying a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold), exited the fourth quarter with cash and marketable securities of $825.91 million, up from $520.17 million at 2019-end. Long-term debt (net of current maturities) was $2.80 billion compared with $2.63 billion at 2019 end. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Performance of Other Airline Stocks

United Airlines (UAL - Free Report) , carrying a Zacks Rank #3, incurred a loss (excluding 6 cents from non-recurring items) of $7 per share in the fourth quarter of 2020, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of $6.56. Meanwhile, operating revenues of $3,412 million lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3,420.4 million.

Delta Air Lines (DAL - Free Report) , carrying a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell), incurred a loss (excluding $1.34 from non-recurring items) of $2.53 per share in the fourth quarter of 2020, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of $2.43. Total revenues of $3,973 million topped the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3,754.5 million.

Southwest Airlines (LUV - Free Report) , carrying a Zacks Rank #4, incurred a loss of $1.29 per share (excluding 25 cents from non-recurring items) in the fourth quarter of 2020, narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of $1.69. Meanwhile, operating revenues of $2,013 million lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2,117.5 million.

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