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Delta Air Lines Q4'19 adjusted profit tops estimates amid strong travel demand

Delta Air Lines Inc. reported better-than-expected adjusted earnings for the fourth quarter of 2019 on the back of strong travel demand during the holiday season.

The company's net income rose to $1.10 billion, or $1.71 per share in the quarter that ended Dec. 31, 2019, from $1.02 billion, or $1.49 per share, in the year-ago period.

On an adjusted basis, fourth-quarter 2019 net profit climbed year over year to $1.10 billion, or $1.70 per share, from $885 million, or $1.30 per share. Delta topped the S&P Global Market Intelligence consensus normalized EPS estimate of $1.39 for the quarter.

Fourth-quarter operating revenue grew to $11.44 billion from $10.74 billion a year earlier, above the S&P Global Market Intelligence consensus estimate of $11.37 billion.

The Atlanta-based carrier expects revenue growth of 5% to 7% year over year in the first quarter of 2020.

For the year ended Dec. 31, 2019, Delta reported an adjusted net income of $4.77 billion, or $7.31 per share, up from $3.89 billion, or $5.61 per share, recorded in 2018.