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United Continental shares rise on Q3 profit, 2018 forecast boost

Shares of United Continental Holdings Inc. climbed in extended-hours trading after the U.S. airline firm reported a third-quarter net income of $836 million, or $3.06 per share, up from $645 million, or $2.15 per share, in the year-ago period.

The parent firm of United Airlines said its third-quarter adjusted EPS rose year over year to $3.06 from $2.25, falling short of the S&P Global Market Intelligence consensus normalized EPS estimate of $3.07.

Total operating revenue in the third quarter grew to $11.00 billion from $9.90 billion a year earlier, surpassing the S&P Global Market Intelligence consensus estimate of $10.95 billion. Passenger revenue rose 11.6% year over year to $10.12 billion, and cargo revenue increased 6.1% to $296 million.

Consolidated passenger revenue per available seat mile, a key metric in the airline industry, rose 6.1% in the third quarter from a year ago, United Continental said.

United Continental also raised the lower end of its full-year 2018 profit guidance. The company now expects to earn from $8.00 per share to $8.75 per share on an adjusted basis, compared to its previous adjusted EPS forecast of $7.25 to $8.75.

United's stock was up 4.65% as of 5:22 p.m. ET, trading at $87.3999 per share.