JetBlue October Key Operating Metrics Rise
JetBlue's October saw the airline post double-digit rises in certain significant operating figures. The company this week released its metrics for the month, revealing that revenue passenger miles grew to 2.72 billion, up just over 7% compared to October 2012's number.
Available seat miles saw a higher climb, rising almost 11% over the same time frame to 3.34 billion. The total number of revenue passengers also advanced, by 6% on a year-over-year basis to 2.33 million.
The only major metric that went down over the period was the company's load factor (i.e., the average "occupancy" of its planes). This past October, the figure was 81.4%, a 2.9-percentage-point decline from the 84.3% recorded in the same month last year.
The improved numbers should add to the generally bullish sentiment on JetBlue's shares of late. On Tuesday, the stock traded as much as 11% higher on the day, following the government's approval of the merger of American Airlines owner AMR with US Airways. One condition of the approval is that the two latter airlines will have to reduce their presence at two key Northeast airports, New York's LaGuardia and Washington, D.C.'s Reagan National. JetBlue is considered to be a leading candidate to obtain many of the slots vacated by its new rival.
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