No place like home: Delta says strong US and corporate travel offset international results

IndustriesAssociated Press

Delta Air Lines Inc. said Thursday that a key revenue figure rose 2 percent in September as corporate flying and demand for travel within the U.S. offset "pressure" on international revenue.

The figure — revenue for every seat flown one mile — rises when airlines fill more seats, charge higher average fares, or both. Airlines have kept prices up by limiting the addition of flights.

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Traffic rose 5.4 percent, as passengers flew 16.95 billion miles last month. Both U.S. and international flying increased.

Delta added 4.9 percent passenger-carrying capacity, compared with August 2013. With traffic rising faster than capacity, the average flight was a bit more full — 83.7 percent, up from 83.3 percent.

The figures include Delta Connection regional flights.

Shares of Atlanta-based Delta rose 72 cents, or 2.1 percent, to $35.62 in morning trading. That wiped out most of a 3.5 percent decline on Wednesday, when airline shares fell after disclosure that a man later diagnosed with Ebola flew to the U.S. on commercial flights two weeks ago.