American Airlines (AA) has revealed plans to hire 1,500 pilots over the next five years following record financial results in August. The airline's parent company, AMR, recorded revenue of $2.3bn during August 2013, up seven per cent from the same month in 2012. AA said it would start advertising the roles this week and plans to hire 45 to 50 pilots each month through next summer. However, the airline is still under bankruptcy protection and its plan to emerge from this hinges on its controversial proposal to merge with US Airways.
The merger is currently being blocked by an antitrust lawsuit led by the US Department of Justice (DoJ). Yesterday (1 October), Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott revoked his rejection of the merger to pledge his support under new conditions. These include AA maintaining a scheduled daily service to more than 20 airports in Texas; keeping its headquarters in the Dallas/Fort Worth area; and continuing to hold Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport as a large hub airport for the combined airline. The State of Texas was co-plaintiff in the DoJ's lawsuit to block the merger, but now no longer opposes it. Doug Parker, chairman and CEO of US Airways, said: "We are grateful to have the support of Attorney General Abbott. In addition, the support for the merger from the employees of American Airlines and US Airways has been overwhelming. This combination makes sense for our customers, employees and the communities we serve. We are dedicated to completing this merger on behalf of all of them."