Alaska Airlines Group (ALK) has disclosed plans to lower January flight departures by about 10%, as the health of its employees has been affected greatly by the spread of the Omicron variant. In the meantime, the company plans to reset operations by improving flexibility and capacity.
“As we have entered 2022, the continued impacts of omicron have been disruptive in all our lives and unprecedented employee sick calls have impacted our ability to operate our airline reliably. To our guests, we apologize for the considerable inconvenience and are working hard to return to the level of service they know and expect from us,” the airlines said.
According to FlightAware, a flight-tracking website, more than 2,000 U.S. flights were cancelled by several airline companies on the same day. Alaska Air alone cancelled 137 flights, which accounted for 18% of its schedule.
Also, the company’s peers, SkyWest (SKYW), Southwest (LUV) and United Airlines (UAL), canceled 10% or more of their schedule on Thursday.
Evercore ISI analyst Duane Pfennigwerth maintained a Buy rating on Alaska Air with a price target of $80, implying 46.9% upside potential from current level.
Pfennigwerth expects the company to report earnings per share of $1.55 for the fourth quarter of 2021.
Consensus among analysts is a Strong Buy based on 7 unanimous Buys. The average Alaska Air price target stands at $80.43 and implies upside potential of 47.7%.
TipRanks’ Website Traffic tool, which uses data from SEMrush Holdings (SEMR), the world’s biggest website usage monitoring service, offers insight into Alaska Air’s performance.
According to the tool, in November, the Alaska Air website recorded an 18.6% monthly increase in global unique visits, compared to the previous year. Likewise, year-to-date website traffic has grown 18.4% against the same period last year.
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