Jan 10 Southwest Airlines Co said on
Tuesday it expected smaller decline in fourth-quarter unit
revenue, a closely watched metric, citing an improvement in
average fares for U.S. flights booked at the last minute.
The No. 4 airline by passenger traffic said it expects unit
revenue to be down 3-4 percent for the quarter, compared with
its December forecast of a decline of 4-5 percent.
Unit revenue reflects sales measured against how many seats
an airline flies and how far it flies them.
Last week, larger rival Delta Air Lines Inc had also
lowered its expectations of a decline in fourth-quarter
passenger unit revenue, citing strong demand in December.
A computer outage in July had forced Southwest to cancel
more than 2,000 flights and offer refunds to passengers. This
was partly responsible for pushing down the airline's unit
revenue by 4.1 percent in the third-quarter ended Sept. 30.
(Reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak