Delta Air Lines, Inc. (DAL - Free Report) reported fourth-quarter 2017 (ended Dec 31) earnings per share (excluding 16 cents from non-recurring items) of 96 cents, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 88 cents. Earnings increased 17.1% on a year-over-year basis.
How Was the Estimate Revision Trend?
Investors should note that the earnings estimate revisions for Delta depicted a gloomy picture prior to the earnings release. The stock had seen the Zacks Consensus Estimate for fourth-quarter earnings being revised 12.7% over the last 30 days.
The company also has an unimpressive earnings history having outperformed the Zacks Consensus Estimate only in two of the last four quarters with an average beat of 1.6%.
Revenues Higher Than Expected
Delta recorded revenues of $10,245 million, which surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $10,158.8 million. Also, it compared favorably with the year-ago number of $9,458 million.
Key Stats to Note: The airline behemoth witnessed a 4.2% rise in consolidated passenger revenue per available seat mile (PRASM: a key measure of unit revenue) in the quarter. For the first quarter of 2018, the carrier expects earnings per share between 60 cents and 80 cents. The carrier anticipates pre-tax margin in the range of 6% to 8% in the quarter. The estimated fuel price, including taxes and refinery impact, is expected in the range of $2.05 to $2.10 per gallon for the first quarter. System capacity is expected to be up approximately 3% on a year over year basis. Cost per Available Seat Mile (normalized), excluding fuel and profit sharing, is expected to increase in the band of 2% to 4% in the first quarter.
Zacks Rank: Currently, Delta Air Lines has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) but that could change following the company’s earnings report which was just released. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Stock Price: The earnings and revenues beat pleased the investors. Consequently shares of the company were up in pre-market trading at the time of writing.
Check back later for our full write up on this Delta Air Lines earnings report later!
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