TWA Posts Profit After '83 Loss; USAir Up 51%

Trans World Airlines Inc. reported Wednesday that it lost $29.4 million in the fourth quarter, compared to a year-earlier profit of $21 million.

USAir Group Inc., meanwhile, said its fourth-quarter profit slipped 2% from a year earlier, but full-year earnings jumped 51% from 1983.

For all of 1984, TWA said it earned $77.1 million from operations and recorded net income of $29.9 million. In 1983, TWA lost $65.8 million on operations and suffered a net loss of $12.4 million.

It was the first time since 1978 that TWA showed an annual profit before one-time gains, and it reflected the stronger U.S. economy, improved U.S. travel overseas caused by the strong dollar and lower fuel prices and employment costs, C. E. Meyer Jr., president and chief executive, said in a statement.

New York-based TWA said its fourth-quarter loss included a $19.1-million loss from operations, which narrowed from a year-earlier operating loss of $25.6 million. In the 1983 quarter, a one-time, $23.5-million after-tax gain produced net income of $21 million.

Fourth-quarter revenue rose to $853.1 million from $788.2 million.

Annual revenue climbed to $3.66 billion from $3.35 billion.

USAir attributed its improved 1984 performance to cost improvements, which reflected a drop in fuel prices, modernization of its fleet and a "higher level of longer-haul flying."

USAir is based in Washington, D.C., but its principal operating hub is Pittsburgh, and the airline primarily serves the eastern United States.

In the fourth quarter, net income edged down to $30 million from $30.6 million a year earlier. Revenue rose to $414.9 million from $388.4 million.

For the full year, however, profit surged to $121.6 million, or $4.92 a share, from $80.6 million, or $3.49 a share, in 1983. Annual revenue rose to $1.63 billion from $1.43 billion.

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