Qantas Airways posts record profit
Qantas Airways Ltd. posted a record first-half profit and announced its second capital return in less than six months as Chief Executive Officer Alan Joyce's cost-cutting program and lower fuel prices boost Australia's largest airline.
Underlying pretax profit in the six months ended Dec. 31 more than doubled to A$921 million ($666 million) from A$367 million a year earlier, Qantas said in a statement Tuesday. Analysts expected an underlying profit of A$908.7 million, according to the average estimate compiled by Bloomberg.
Joyce said he has no plans to step down from the role that he's held since 2008 as a A$2 billion turnaround program announced two years ago continues to bear fruit. The Sydney-based airline on Tuesday announced a stock buyback of as much as A$500 million, taking the capital return to more than A$1 billion since August. Only two years ago the airline had widening losses, a stock near a record low and junk-rated debt.