After merger, American will leapfrog United, Delta

AP News
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Posted: Nov 27, 2013 3:50 PM

When it completes its merger with US Airways, the new American Airlines will regain a title that it lost in 2008 — world's biggest airline.

American fell from the top spot in 2008, when Delta Air Lines Inc. grew by buying Northwest. In 2010, American dropped to No. 3 when United combined with Continental to form United Continental Holdings Inc. Southwest Airlines Co. joined the merger frenzy when it bought AirTran in 2011, although it remained smaller than AMR Corp.-owned American.

Here's how the four biggest U.S. airlines will rank in bragging rights after the American-US Airways merger is complete:

1. American (Fort Worth, Texas; ticker symbol will be AAL) — $38.69 billion in 2012 revenue; 147.1 billion miles flown by mainline passengers in first nine months of 2013.

2. United (Chicago; UAL) — $37.15 billion in 2012 revenue; 136 billion miles flown by mainline passengers in first nine months of 2013.

3. Delta (Atlanta; DAL) — $36.67 billion in 2012 revenue; 132.1 billion miles flown by mainline passengers in first nine months of 2013.

4. Southwest (Dallas; LUV) — $17.09 billion in 2012 revenue; 78.7 billion miles flown by passengers in first nine months of 2013.

Passenger miles exclude flights on regional affiliates.

Source: Companies' filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.