JetBlue first quarter results announced

JetBlue Airways has reported its results for the first quarter 2011 (1Q11) featuring a net income of $3 million, compared with a first quarter 2010 net loss of $1 million.

Operating income for 1Q11 was $45 million, resulting in a 4.4% operating margin, compared with 1Q10’s operating income of $43 million and a 4.9% operating margin. The pre-tax income in 1Q11 was $6 million compared with a pre-tax loss of $1 million in 1Q10.

“Despite significantly higher fuel prices, we are pleased to report a profit in the first quarter,” remarked Dave Barger, JetBlue’s president and CEO. “Our first quarter results demonstrate the success of our Boston and Caribbean network which continue to deliver strong revenue performance and the focus brought by our 13,000 crewmembers to deliver a great JetBlue experience.”

JetBlue reported record first quarter operating revenues of $1 billion. Yield per passenger mile in 1Q11 was 13.08 cents, up 7.7% compared with 1Q10. Passenger revenue per available seat mile (PRASM) for 1Q11 increased 14.1% year-over-year to 10.64 cents and operating revenue per available seat mile (RASM) increased 15.1% year-over-year to 11.89 cents.

Operating expenses in 1Q11 increased 16.8%, or $139 million, over the prior year period. JetBlue’s 1Q11 operating expense per available seat mile (CASM) increased 15.6% year-over-year to 11.37 cents. Excluding fuel, CASM increased 6.1% to 7.22 cents. The non-fuel unit costs were negatively impacted by storm-related flight cancellations that occurred in January and February.

JetBlue ended the first quarter with approximately $1.1 billion in unrestricted cash and short term investments.

“With our continued focus on maintaining and building financial strength, we believe we are well positioned in today’s volatile fuel environment,” commented Ed Barnes, JetBlue’s chief financial officer. “Our healthy operating cash flow allows us to continue to make investments in the business which better position us relative to the competition.”

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