Delta Air Lines generated an $85 million net profit during the first three months of the year — a year-over-year bump of $124 million — finishing the quarter with its best financial results in more than 10 years.
Operating revenue grew by $87 million, year over year.
Passenger numbers fueled Delta’s success, growing by 1.4 percent. Cargo revenue decreased by 2.4 percent, year over year, on lower yields, finishing the quarter at $238 million. Third-party maintenance also shared some of the blame, falling by 1.4 percent.
The company spent $650 million during the quarter on capital costs, which included $500 million in fleet improvements and $47 million on two additional slots at London Heathrow. The carrier also continued to reduce its debt, which has fallen by $6 billion since 2009.
"This performance is proof that we are on the right path to making Delta the airline of choice for our shareholders, employees and customers," Delta Chief Executive Officer Richard Anderson said in a statement. "With a solid financial foundation and building momentum from initiatives like our LaGuardia expansion, Virgin Atlantic investment and new Terminal 4 at New York-JFK, we are well positioned to generate significant improvements in Delta's profitability going forward." - Jon Ross