American Airlines May Be Too Healthy

In the high-stakes poker game known as the airline industry, American Airlines Inc. holds a better hand than most. The Fort Worth-based carrier enjoys healthy cash flow, a strong brand name, a powerful route network, and a young jet fleet. And after racking up $1.3 billion in red ink over the last four years, parent company AMR Corp. posted record third-quarter profits of $205 million before preferred dividends, while its first-half operating margin of 7% beat most major rivals.

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