American Eagle could fly on its own

July 20, 2011 at 3:07 PM
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FORT WORTH, Texas, July 20 (UPI) -- AMR Corp., owners of American Airlines Inc., said it was exploring a spin-off or sale of its regional U.S. carrier American Eagle.

"We believe that a divestiture of Eagle would be in the best interests of AMR and Eagle, as well as our shareholders, customers and employees," said AMR Chairman and Chief Executive Gerard Arpey in a statement.

"Strategically for AMR, it would be beneficial, as we could, over time, diversify our regional feed with additional regional airlines to ensure we have access to the most competitive rates and services," he said.

AMR also said Wednesday it had a net loss of $286 million in the second quarter, meaning operational costs were likely part of the decision to divest itself of American Eagle.

AMR said, "The company currently envisions the divestiture as a spin-off, however, it remains open to other options, including a sale."

AMR said losses were linked to fuel costs, which rose 31 percent compared to the second quarter of 2010. "AMR paid on average $3.12 per gallon for fuel in the second quarter of this year versus $2.37 in the second quarter of 2010," a difference that added up to $524 million additional fuel costs April through June this year compared to last year.

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