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EARNINGS

Western Airlines' Net Sets Quarterly Record

July 19, 1985|ROBERT E. DALLOS

Western Airlines reported net income of $31.7 million in the second quarter, the most it has ever earned in a single quarter. In the same period of 1984, the Los Angeles-based carrier lost $13.7 million.

Western's operating profit was $34.5 million in the quarter, compared to a loss of $5.9 million in the period a year earlier. Revenue was $357.9 million, also a record for any quarter. That compared to $293.9 million last year.

Gerald Grinstein, Western's chief executive, said in an interview that, while the United Airlines strike in May and June might have been a "major factor" in the results, "we also got our house in order, and our marketing program is moving along on schedule. We have reduced costs and boosted traffic to levels at which Western can be profitable."

Western's load factors in the period rose to 64% from 58.3%.

Grinstein predicted that Western would be profitable in 1985.

"The turnaround is on schedule," he said. For all of 1984, Western had a loss of $29.2 million.

Grinstein said the full extent of Western's improved performance is reflected in the $81.7-million swing in its half-year results--to a $45-million profit in the first six months of 1985 from a loss of $36.7 million last year.

Meanwhile, USAir Group also reported second-quarter earnings that were the best in its history. The net profit was $49.5 million, an increase of almost 27% over the $39-million profit in the 1984 second quarter. Revenue in the second quarter was $481 million, up 12.1% from $429 million the year before.

USAir Chairman and President Edwin I. Colodny attributed the good earnings in part to the United strike, which was settled June 14. But he said strong advance bookings "would indicate that substantial traffic growth will continue through the third quarter."

Newport Beach-based Aircal Inc. also reported sharply higher second-quarter earnings.

The regional carrier said net income for the three months ended June 30 totaled $8.7 million, including a $4.04-million tax credit. A year earlier, Aircal posted net income of $3.03 million, which included a $1.4-million tax credit. Revenue for the most recent quarter totaled $97.23 million, up 23% from last year's $78.6 million.

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