Continental Airlines

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French prosecutors appeal Concorde crash ruling

A French prosecutor’s office said Tuesday it is appealing the court ruling that blamed Continental Airlines for the deadly crash of a supersonic Concorde jet outside Paris a decade ago.

Prosecutors at the court in Pontoise, outside Paris, had argued that the former head of the Concorde program at planemaker Aerospatiale should share some legal responsibility with Continental for the crash. Get the full story »

Continental appeals ruling in Concorde crash

AFP | Continental Airlines on Monday lodged an appeal against a conviction by a French court, which found it criminally responsible for the 2000 Concorde air disaster in which 113 people were killed.

Olivier Metzner, lawyer for the U.S. airline, said he had lodged the papers with the appellate court in Versailles, west of Paris. Get the full story »

Continental ordered to pay in Concorde crash

A French court has ordered Continental Airlines Inc. to pay Air France SA more than $1.3 million in damages over the crash of a supersonic Concorde jet outside Paris a decade ago that killed 113 people. The court, in a lengthy verdict Monday, also found a Continental mechanic guilty of manslaughter.

The presiding judge confirmed that titanium debris dropped by a Continental DC-10 onto the runway at Charles de Gaulle airport before the Concorde took off was to blame for the crash. Investigators said debris gashed the Concorde’s tire, propelling bits of rubber into the fuel tanks and sparking a fire.

Continental adds new Chicago-Florida flights

Just in time for spring break, Continental Airlines is launching service from Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport to Ft. Lauderdale and West Palm Beach.

Merger partner United Airlines had pulled out of those markets in 2008, as part of a broader plan to ground its Boeing 737 fleet, leaving Southwest Airlines with the lion’s share of flights between Chicago and Florida’s east coast resorts. Get the full story »

UAL, Continental post quarterly profits

Buoyed by a global rebound in travel, United and Continental airlines flew into the black during their last quarter as independent carriers.

United Continental Holdings Inc., the parent company created by the airlines’ Oct. 1 merger, reported that United’s net income soared to $473 million or $2.12 per share, excluding fuel and merger-related charges during the third quarter. That’s a $533 million improvement from 2009 results. Get the full story »

UAL, Continental close deal to form No. 1 airline

Continental Airlines CEO Jeff Smisek walks through Terminal C of Houston Intercontinental Airport to catch a flight to Chicago on Sept. 23, 2010. (Tribune)

United Airlines closed its merger with Continental Airlines Friday to create the world’s largest airline, called United Airlines. The stock begins trading this morning under the symbol UAL. The holding company formed from the all-stock merger will be called United Continental Holdings Inc.

The two airlines will begin marketing as one company in the spring. In the meantime, travelers will see United employees at United kiosks and Continental employees at Continental kiosks, depending on which carrier is handling the flight.

The company is working to combine frequent flyer programs. In a call with reporters, Smisek underscored, “your miles are safe.” Get the full story »

United’s top lawyer resigns ahead of merger

By Ameet Sachdev and Julie Johnsson | The merger between United and Continental airlines is scheduled to become official on Friday, and there is an unexpected hole in the senior management team.

Tom Sabatino, who was supposed to be the top lawyer inside the combined United-Continental airlines, has resigned, the Tribune has confirmed. Get the full story »

Moody’s raises its ratings on UAL Corp.

Moody’s Investors Service raised its ratings on UAL Corp. a notch, finishing the review of the airline it begun when the parent of United unveiled its deal to merge with Continental Airlines Inc. Get the full story »

United, Continental defeat effort to block merger‎

From BusinessWeek | UAL Corp.’s merger with Continental Airlines Inc. won’t create a monopoly and shouldn’t be blocked on antitrust grounds, a federal judge ruled, helping to clear the way for the deal’s completion.

Judge denies antitrust injunction in United merger

Bloomberg News | A federal judge in California denied a request that he enjoin the merger of UAL Corp. with Continental Airlines Inc. on antitrust grounds, according to a ruling in San Francisco late yesterday.

United shareholders approve Continental merger

United CEO Glenn Tilton, left, and Chicago Mayor Richard Daley at a press conference on the United-Continental merger on May 4, 2010. (José M. Osorio/Chicago Tribune)

Chicago-based United Airlines shareholders on Friday overwhelmingly voted to approve a deal to combine with Continental to form the world’s biggest airline.

Meanwhile in Houston, Continental shareholders also gave the merger a thumbs up.

Shareholders of United parent UAL Corp. met in Elk Grove Township on Friday morning to vote on the $3 billion stock swap. The companies expect the deal to close in the next two weeks. Get the full story »

United-Continental to keep Cleveland operations

United and Continental Airlines agreed on Monday to maintain a hub in Cleveland for at least five more years, as Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray ended his antitrust investigation of the mega-merger.

The announcement clears one of the last remaining roadblocks to the tie-up, which will create the world’s largest carrier. The Justice Department, which had been expected to provide the closest scrutiny of the deal, concluded its antitrust probe last month.

United and Continental shareholders will vote on Friday to formally approve the financial union of the two airlines. The deal is slated to close on Oct. 1, when Continental CEO Jeff Smisek will become chief executive of the new United. Get the full story »

Fitch upgrades UAL and United Airlines ratings

Fitch Ratings upgraded United Airlines Inc. and its parent UAL Corp. before the closing of a tie-up with Continental Airlines Inc.

American Airlines’ traffic up 3.1% in August

AMR Corp.  said American Airlines’ August traffic rose 3.1 percent, a bigger increase than the preceding month, on continued international strength.

Most U.S. airlines have been reporting notable increases in traffic as travelers return to flying. Airlines had been cutting capacity in recent years, first in response to record-high fuel prices and then to cope with a plunge in demand during the recession. Get the full story »

Union says Continental to recall 100 pilots

In a move reflecting the recovering business of health of airlines, the pilots union for Continental Airlines said Friday that the carrier plans to recall more than 100 furloughed pilots over the next 18 months. Get the full story »