Red Letter Day

The first of the month is a red letter day for most US airline observers. That’s when Continental Airlines issues a revenue report. It’s all the more closely watched because Conti is the only major to break out revenue from traffic on a monthly basis.

For August, unit revenues were up by about 4.5%, based on its reported unit-revenue increase, estimates JP Morgan’s Jamie Baker. Merrill Lynch analyst Mike Linenberg says this lags his forecast and Continental’s own June and July yield gains of 6% and 6.3%. In other words, nothing to celebrate this month unlike many in the recent past. Red ink ahead.


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