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Southwest Airlines' June Load Factor Flat, RASM View Intact

Southwest Airlines Co. LUV, a low-cost carrier, recorded a 3.7% year-over-year improvement in revenue passenger miles or RPMs (a measure of air traffic) to 11.9 billion for the month of Jun 2017. Available seat miles or ASMs (a measure of capacity) expanded 3.8% to 13.6 billion.

Another important metric – load factor (percentage of seats filled by passengers) – was flat year-over-year at 87.4% during the month, as capacity expansion was on par with traffic growth.

For the first six months of the ongoing year, Southwest Airlines has reported a 4.3% rise in RPMs to 63.7 billion and a 4.6% increase in ASMs to 76.9 billion. However, load factor for the period contracted 30 basis points to 82.9%.

The low-cost carrier still expects second-quarter 2017 operating revenue per ASM (RASM) to increase in the range of 1-2% on a year-over-year basis.The Dallas-based company’s unchanged RASM guidance failed to find favor with investors, resulting in the stock declining 1.73% on Jul 10.

Zacks Rank & Key Picks

Southwest Airlines currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Investors interested in the airline space may also consider Air France-KLM SA AFLYY, American Airlines Group, Inc. AAL and Delta Air Lines, Inc. DAL, each sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Shares of Air France-KLM, American Airlines and Delta Air Lines have rallied over 85%, 19% and 21% ,respectively, in the last three months.

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Southwest Airlines Company (LUV): Free Stock Analysis Report
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Air France-KLM SA (AFLYY): Free Stock Analysis Report
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