American Airlines Group Inc.'s stock surged 2.3% in premarket trade Friday, after the air carrier reported a fourth-quarter profit that rose above expectations. Earnings rose to $3.28 billion, or $5.09 a share, from $597 million, or 82 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. Excluding non-recurring items, such as a benefit related to the reversal of a tax valuation allowance, adjusted earnings per share came to $2, above the FactSet consensus of $1.97. Revenue fell to $9.63 billion from $10.16 billion, compared with the FactSet consensus of $9.64 billion. Passenger revenue per available seat mile (PRASM) fell 6% to 12.69 cents. Operating expenses declined 7.9%, due primarily to a 41% drop in fuel expenses. The stock has tumbled 17% over the past three months through Thursday, while the S&P 500 has lost 9.4%.
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