(Reuters) – JetBlue Airways Corp forecast full-year adjusted profit above Wall Street estimates on Thursday, aided by a strong rebound in travel demand even as economic worries mount.
U.S. carriers have been enjoying the strongest travel demand since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, boosted by reopening of closed borders, a strong U.S. dollar and rising corporate travel.
The New York-based carrier expects an adjusted profit of between 70 cents and $1.00 per share for 2023, compared with analysts’ average estimate of 67 cents per share in Refinitiv IBES data.
However, the company warned of a wider-than-expected loss in the first quarter of the year, sending its shares down more than 1% in premarket trade, partly due to high fuel costs that have upset the cost base for the airline industry, pushing many carriers to increase ticket prices.
JetBlue sees an adjusted loss in the range of 45 cents to 35 cents per share in the current quarter, compared with analysts’ estimate of 4 cents per share.
Excluding items, the company reported an adjusted profit of 22 cents per share for the quarter through December, versus analysts’ average estimate of 20 cents per share.
Its total operating revenue rose nearly 32% to $2.42 billion, slightly above analysts’ estimate of $2.41 billion.
(Reporting by Priyamvada C in Bengaluru; Editing by Milla Nissi)