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Delta Air Lines stock retreats on Wednesday despite topping Q1 targets

 

Q1 earnings report fails to support Delta Air Lines stock as airline shares fall 

Delta Air Lines stock (DAL) fell on Wednesday, erasing early gains after the company topped first-quarter earnings forecasts. The dip occurred amidst a broader downturn among airline stocks, which initially led gains in the S&P 500 index during early trading. 

Delta Air Lines announced an impressive 80% jump in its adjusted earnings for the first quarter, reaching 45 cents per share, alongside a 6% increase in revenue to $12.6 billion— a record high for the company in the first quarter. 

The figures exceeded FactSet analysts’ projections, as they had anticipated a 44% rise in earnings to 36 cents per share and a revenue increase of 5.7% to $12.52 billion. 

Delta highlighted a surge in corporate travel demand, with managed corporate sales climbing 14% compared to the previous year. Domestic unit revenues also increased by 3% year-over-year, setting a new record for the March quarter. 

 

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Delta earnings forecast set at between $6 and $7 EPS 

The airline reaffirmed its earnings forecast for the full year to be between $6 and $7 per share, aligning with the FactSet prediction of $6.45 per share. Delta also projected its free cash flow for 2024 to be in the range of $3 billion to $4 billion. 

For the upcoming second quarter, Delta anticipates earnings to be between $2.20 and $2.50 per share, a decrease from the $2.68 per share reported last year. The airline also expects revenue growth of 5% to 7%. This guidance aligns with analyst expectations of $2.22 per share on revenue growth of 5.5% to $15.41 billion. 

 

Delta Air Lines stock: Analyst ratings 

Multinational investment bank UBS recently began covering Delta Air Lines stock with a Buy rating and a target price of $59, citing potential for margin growth in 2024 and 2025 due to easing cost pressures later in the year and a positive turn in unit revenues, as reported by The Fly. 

After an initial premarket jump of 4.2%, DAL stock fell by 2.3% by Wednesday's close. Delta stock has been on an upward trend since mid-January, rallying by 14.9% year-to-date. 

DAL stock was down 0.15% in premarket trading on Thursday.  

Competitor United Airlines (UAL) saw its shares decrease by 2.5% on Wednesday, dipping below their 50-day average after an early 2% gain. United has seen its stock rise by 2.7% in 2024.  

American Airlines stock (AAL) dipped along with the broader market on Wednesday, dropping 3.9% after an initial 2.8% rise in premarket trading. American's stock has fallen by 2.4% year-to-date and is currently 6% below its 200-day line. 

 


When considering shares, indices, forex (foreign exchange) and commodities for trading and price predictions, remember that trading CFDs involves a significant degree of risk and could result in capital loss. 

Past performance is not indicative of any future results. This information is provided for informative purposes only and should not be construed to be investment advice. 

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