April 23, 2015

Southwest Airlines’ first quarter net income nearly triples

Southwest Airlines reported record first quarter net income of US$453m which included US$2m (net) of favorable special items, compared with first quarter 2014 net income of US$152m, which included US$26m (net) of favorable special items. First quarter 2015 total operating revenues increased 6.0% US$4.4bn, on a 6.0% increase in ASMs, both compared with first quarter 2014, which resulted in operating unit revenues comparable to first quarter 2014.  The growth in total operating revenues was largely driven by strong first quarter 2015 passenger revenues of US$4.2bn. Total operating expenses in first quarter 2015 decreased 8.0% to US$3.6bn, compared with first quarter 2014. During first quarter 2015, the Company incurred costs (before profitsharing and taxes) associated with the acquisition and integration of AirTran of US$23m and recorded a US$37m (before profitsharing and taxes) reduction to other operating expenses related to a favorable litigation settlement, both of which are special items.  Excluding special items in both periods, total operating expenses in first quarter 2015 decreased 7.1% to US$3.6bn, compared with first quarter 2014. Operating income in first quarter 2015 was a first quarter record US$780m, compared with US$215m in first quarter 2014.  Excluding special items, operating income was a first quarter record US$770m in first quarter 2015, compared with US$242m in first quarter 2014.

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