AMERICAN AIRLINES (NYSE: AAL) has been one of the most consistently profitable airlines in the world, thanks in part to a strategy of selling low on airfares.
It is now reporting a record profit for the first time in more than five years.
But this achievement has come at the cost of a massive stock price increase for the company, which has soared more than 200% in the past decade.
American Airlines shares jumped nearly 6% Thursday on the news that the airline is selling airfare contracts to pay for new aircraft.
The company’s stock has risen more than 7% since last October, the year before the financial crisis.
The shares are up more than 20% since January 2018, when the stock was trading at a low of $9.35.
The stock has also grown more than 70% in 2017, when it was trading for about $2.50 per share.
American Airlines shares closed Thursday at $10.55.
The airline said in a statement that it is now in the process of selling the airfage contracts, which expire in 2019.
The announcement comes as the company is facing criticism for not doing enough to curb a growing problem with its pilots.
The carrier said it has received a total of 2,637 complaints about the quality of its pilots, a number that has tripled in the last year.
The problem is compounded by a backlog of airfages and a growing number of complaints, the company said.
Airlines are under increasing pressure to find cheaper fares to compete with increasingly competitive airlines in China and Europe.
In October, a pilot in China complained that he was asked to pay more than $300 for a flight, according to Bloomberg.
The complaint prompted the carrier to issue an apology and to pay the man $6,000 to get his money back.
More from The Wall Street Journal: The airline also said it will work with airlines in Asia to improve the customer experience, but said it was still focused on finding better ways to sell airfarms.
The American CEO said the airline has made progress in reducing the backlog of orders and will continue to focus on making improvements to customer service.
American Airways said it would continue to work with its partner carriers to improve its service and increase customer satisfaction.