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The Associated Press October 5, 2010, 5:58PM ET

American Airlines says Sept. traffic rises 5.6 pct

American Airlines said Tuesday that September traffic rose 5.6 percent over a year ago, with international traffic jumping by double-digit percentages.

American said paying passengers flew 10.05 billion miles last month, up from 9.52 billion miles in September 2009. International flights accounted for about 40 percent of the airline's business, and traffic on those rose 12.2 percent. Domestic traffic increased 1.6 percent.

American parent AMR Corp., which is now the No. 3 U.S. airline operator behind the new United Continental Holdings Inc. and Delta Air Lines Inc., is pinning much of its hopes for growth on expanded international flying with partners including British Airways and Japan Airlines.

In September, American increased its passenger-carrying capacity by 4.8 percent, to 12.55 billion available seat miles, a measure of one seat flown one mile. It boosted international capacity by 10.1 percent from the same time last year, compared with just a 1.5 percent increase in domestic capacity.

The average flight last month was 80.1 percent full, up from 79.4 percent a year earlier.

Through the first nine months of the year, traffic was up 2.1 percent, with a 5 percent gain on international flights and a 0.4 percent increase on domestic flights.

AMR shares rose 15 cents, or 2.5 percent, to close at $6.11.

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