P.M. BRIEFING : Airlines Delay Fare Increases

FROM TIMES WIRE SERVICES

Most of the large U.S. airlines today said they will postpone a planned 5.3% fuel-related domestic fare increase by one week until Aug. 30.

The airlines are hiking fares, despite the approach of the soft autumn and winter travel season, because of a sharp rise in jet fuel prices sparked by Iraq's invasion of Kuwait.

The delay on the higher fares, which were due to kick in Thursday, was prompted by Trans World Airlines Inc.'s announcement Tuesday that it would not raise ticket prices until Aug. 30.

This morning, American Airlines and United Airlines were the first of the major carriers to announce that they would postpone the hike.

Delta Air Lines, Northwest Airlines, USAir, Eastern Airlines and Pan Am all quickly followed suit.

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