US Airways posts smaller-than-expected loss

US Airways provided the latest surprise for Wall Street analysts in reporting 2009 and fourth-quarter results. The airline, the largest at PHL, said it had a Q4 net loss of $79 million, compared with a loss of $543 million a year earlier. Excluding special items (the number analysts look at) US Airways lost $32 million, compared with $222 million of red ink in the 2008 Q4.

For the full year, the airline lost $205 million vs. a whopping $2.2 billion in 2008. The net 2009 loss without special credits of $294 million was $499 million, compared with $808 million a year ago.More detail should be forthcoming after the company's conference call at 12:30 p.m. Philadelphia time today. Here is the Inquirer's story on the results.