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JetBlue Airways' June Traffic Grows, Trend Likely to Stay

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Leading passenger airline JetBlue Airways Corporation (JBLU - Free Report) has registered stable traffic growth in June 2014. The carrier reported airline traffic – measured in revenue passenger miles or RPMs – of 3.26 million, up 4.0% year over year, representing the fifth consecutive month of high traffic post a dip in numbers in Jan 2014.

Consolidated capacity (or available seat miles/ASMs) was also up 5.3% year over year at 3.84 billion. However, the load factor or percentage of seats filled by passengers was 84.7%, up 100 basis points.

Passenger revenue per available seat mile (PRASM) increased 3.0% year over year. The company registered a completion factor of 98.0%, with on-time performance of 77.2%.

In the first half of this year, JetBlue has generated RPMs of 18.29 billion (up 3.8% year over year) and ASMs of 21.81 billion (up 4.4%). However, load factor has trickled down to 83.9% from the year-ago figure of 84.4%.

Notably, arch rivals Delta Airlines Inc. (DAL - Free Report) and Southwest Airlines Co. (LUV - Free Report) witnessed improved traffic in June, while United Continental Holdings Inc.’s (UAL - Free Report) numbers remained flat for the month.

We expect this Rank #2 (Buy) carriers to deliver traffic growth in the future owing to slot wins at the Reagan Washington National Airport and expansion in major growth regions across the Americas.

The passenger carrier has launched its premium service offering – Mint – on flights operating between New York and Los Angeles at an attractive one way fare of $599 to beef up comfort travel. Mint’s unmatched rates coupled with best-in-class in-flight entertainment and refreshment products should fuel the demand for its luxury seats.

Further, to augment the flying experience for its customers, JetBlue recently launched an automatic check-in service, which will allow passengers to receive their boarding pass via email 24 hours prior to the slated flight time. Currently restricted to domestic Even More Space seats, the service intends to enhance passenger convenience by reducing their time to get through the airport and finally board the aircraft. 

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