UPDATE 2-American Airlines parent misses 1st-qtr estimates

* Posts loss of $1.36, excluding one-time items

* Revenue up 4.7 percent

* Shares fall as much as 5.5 pct
(Recasts first sentence, adds estimates, commentary on oil
prices, quotes from memo, updates shares)

By Deepa Seetharaman

NEW YORK, April 21 (BestGrowthStock) – AMR Corp (AMR.N: ), parent of
American Airlines, posted a wider-than-expected quarterly loss
on Wednesday, saying the jump in fuel prices posed an obstacle
to recovery, sending shares down as much as 5.5 percent.

The second-largest U.S. airline said the loss widened to
$505 million, or $1.52 per share, from $375 million, or $1.35
per share, a year earlier.

Excluding a special item related to the devaluation of the
Venezuelan currency in January, AMR lost $1.36 per share. On
average, analysts had expected a loss of $1.31, according to
Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

“That disappointing result, which was driven by lingering
weakness in the economy combined with rising fuel prices,
underscores the reality that, despite a lot of hard work and
progress, we remain regrettably far from our goal of sustained
profitability,” Chief Executive Gerard Arpey said in an
employee memo.

AMR shares were down 30 cents or 3.5 percent at $8.26 at
midday on the New York Stock Exchange, after falling as much as
5.5 percent earlier in the session. The Arca Airline index
(.XAL: ) slipped nearly 2 percent.

The company posted operating revenue of $5.1 billion for
the quarter, a 4.7 percent rise from a year earlier.

Arpey said the company would continue to focus on ways to
boost its network, manage costs and drum up additional

AMR ended the quarter with $5 billion in cash, up sharply
from the $3.3 billion in cash it had a year ago.

In a statement, the company said oil prices remained
“historically high and volatile.” It said crude prices have
jumped 20 percent since February.

AMR paid $211 million more for jet fuel in the first
quarter, at $2.23 per gallon, than it paid a year ago. Fuel and
labor are typically the top two costs for airlines.

In the first quarter, unit revenue rose 6.8 percent, helped
by capacity and revenue management efforts. Passenger yields,
or the average fares paid, rose 3.7 percent from a year
earlier. Capacity fell 2.5 percent.

Earthquakes in Haiti and Chile and other bad weather cost
the airline between $20 million and $25 million in the first

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(Reporting by Deepa Seetharaman; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn and
Matthew Lewis)

UPDATE 2-American Airlines parent misses 1st-qtr estimates