American Airlines losses shrink as travel demand grows


American Airlines Flight 718, the first U.S. commercial Boeing 737 MAX flight since regulators lifted a 20-month grounding in November, lands at LaGuardia Airport in New York, United States, December 29, 2020. REUTERS / Eduardo Munoz

American Airlines Group Inc (AAL.O) reported a smaller quarterly loss on Thursday as rising vaccination rates prompted more people to switch to air travel.

Shares of the airline were up 3.2% to $ 21.66 in pre-market trading, as it said it reduced its rate of cash consumption to about $ 27 million per day in the first quarter, from 30 million dollars in the previous quarter.

Demand for air travel is expected to increase as more people receive vaccines, leading to lower rates of COVID-19 infection and hospitalizations.

“Looking ahead, with the momentum underway since the first quarter, we see signs of continued recovery in demand,” CEO Dough Parker said in a statement.

The company reported a net loss of $ 1.25 billion, or $ 1.97 per share, for the quarter ended March 31, compared with a loss of $ 2.24 billion, or $ 5.26 per share, one year earlier.

On an adjusted basis, the company lost $ 4.32 per share.

Total operating revenues fell 52.9% to $ 4.01 billion.

American Airlines ended the quarter with approximately $ 17.3 billion in cash on hand.

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