United Continental reports loss as traffic fell

FILE - In this July 13, 2011 file photo, United Airlines planes sit on the tarmac at San Francisco International Airport in San Francisco. Thousands of United Airlines passengers around the globe were delayed for hours Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012 after another massive computer outage hit the world?s largest carrier. This is at least the third major computer outage for the Chicago-based airline since June. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File) AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File

The parent company of United Airlines is reporting a $620 million loss in the fourth quarter as passengers stayed away following its problems earlier in the year with integrating Continental.

It posted a full-year loss of $723 million, too, almost wiping out its $840 million profit from 2011.

The fourth-quarter loss worked out to $1.87 per share. Excluding special items the loss would have been 58 cents per share, matching expectations of analysts surveyed by FactSet.

Superstorm Sandy cut $85 million from profits in 2012's final quarter.

United's struggles with technology issues -- tied to the Continental integration -- caused some customers to fly on other airlines. Traffic fell 3.2 percent in the fourth quarter.

A year ago United Continental Holdings Inc. (UAL) lost $138 million, or 42 cents per share.

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