Alaska posts $838m operating profit in 2013

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Alaska Air Group reports an $838 million operating profit in 2013, the best financial performance for the company ever according to chief executive Brad Tilden.

The 58% increase in operating profit comes on a 11% increase to $5.16 billion in operating revenues and a 5% increase to $4.32 billion in operating expenses at the Seattle-based carrier during the year.

Net income rose 61% to $508 million and return on invested capital (ROIC) was up 13.6% during 2013.

“Award-winning customer service, industry-leading on-time performance, and solid execution by our outstanding people led us to our best year ever," says Tilden.

Passenger revenue per available seat mile (PRASM) fell 1.2% to 12.67 cents and costs per available seat mile (CASM) excluding fuel and fleet transition costs decreased 0.1% to 8.47 cents during the year.

Alaska paid an average of $3.30 per gallon for jet fuel, including mark-to-market fuel hedge adjustments, in 2013.

Traffic rose 6.9% on a 7.1% increase in capacity during the year.

In the fourth quarter, operating revenues rose 7% to $1.21 billion and operating expenses increased 2% to $1.08 billion. Operating profit was up 76% to $130 million.

Net profit increased 7% to $78 million during the quarter.

PRASM rose 0.2% to 12.49 cents and CASM excluding fuel and fleet transition costs was up 1% to 8.81 cents during the three months ending in December. Average fuel expenses were $3.21 per gallon.

Traffic rose 3.9% on a 5.1% increase in capacity during the quarter.