United Continental earnings: $2.22 per share vs $2.14 EPS expected

Key Points
  • United posted better than expected earnings per share.
  • The company also beat revenue expectations.
  • United cancelled some 8,300 flights due to severe weather in southeast Texas, Florida and parts of the Caribbean.
United Airlines flat after earnings beat
United Airlines flat after earnings beat

United Continental, the parent company of United Airlines, reported quarterly earnings and revenue that beat analysts expectations, despite severe business disruptions from a series of hurricanes that hit southeast Texas, Florida and parts of the Caribbean.

Here's how the company did compared to what Wall Street expected, according to Thomson Reuters:

  • Earnings per share of $2.22 vs $2.14 expected.
  • Revenue of $9.88 billion vs $9.86 billion expected.

In the year-ago period, United reported earnings per share of $3.11 on $9.91 billion in revenue. Third quarter consolidated passenger revenue per available seat mile was down 3.7 percent compared to the year-ago period.

The company's stock initially rose in after-hours trading, but later paired its modest gain and was slightly down.

United's operations have been disrupted by a series of hurricanes that slammed the United States over the past two months. The company said it cancelled some 8,300 flights due to severe storms during the quarter, which reduced pre-tax income by $185 million.

In September, United said it attributed $400 million in losses to Hurricane Harvey alone, which devastated Houston, Texas, the nation's fourth-largest city. United operates a hub out of George Bush Intercontinental Airport.

The company has also struggled to emerge from a public relations fiasco after security officials forcibly removed a passenger from an overbooked United Express flight operated by Republic Airways last April. A video of the incident went viral online, forcing United to issue a public apology and change some of its policies.

United has since settled with the passenger, Dr. David Dao, who was left bloodied and suffered a concussion during the altercation. The amount of the settlement has not been publicly disclosed.

The company's stock is down by more than 6 percent year to date.