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JetBlue Airways (JBLU) October Traffic and Capacity Increase

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Low-cost carrier JetBlue Airways Corp. (JBLU - Free Report) witnessed an improvement in air traffic in the month of October this year. Traffic – measured in revenue passenger miles (RPMs) – was 3.57 billion, up 6.5% from 3.35 billion recorded a year ago. On a year-over-year basis, consolidated capacity or available seat miles (ASMs) expanded 5.5% to 4.21 billion. The company stock was up 3.95% as of close of business on Nov 10 after the traffic release.

Additionally, load factor or percentage of seats filled by passengers increased to 84.8% from 84.0% in Oct 2015. JetBlue’s preliminary revenue per available seat mile (RASM) in the month dropped roughly 3% on a year-over-year basis. Hurricane Matthew resulted in two percentage points decline in RASM.

In the first ten months of 2016, JetBlue witnessed a 10.1% increase in RPMs to 38.0 billion while ASMs grew 9.9% to 44.63 billion, both on a year-over-year basis. Moreover, the load factor improved 30 basis points to 85.2%.

The airline also delivered a 77.0% on-time performance and 97.7% completion factor for the month of October. The number of departures grew 4.2% and 6.9% for the reported month and for the first 10 months, respectively.

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New Cuba Service

The company announced that it has launched a new daily non-stop service to Holguin in Cuba from Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL). This is the third city in Cuba to be connected with Fort Lauderdale by JetBlue. Currently, the company operates 42 non-stop flights per week to Cuba. More flights are in line with service to Havana starting later in November.

JetBlue with a Zack Rank #3 (Hold) faces intense competition from peers such as Delta Air Lines Inc. (DAL - Free Report) , Southwest Airlines Co. (LUV - Free Report) , and Alaska Air Group Inc. (ALK - Free Report) . You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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