Southwest May Delay Expansion

Price of oil puts damper on airline’s plans to grow capacity.

Southwest Airlines Co. may delay any expansion to as late as 2014 as $100-a-barrel oil erodes profit growth at the largest discount carrier, Chief Executive Officer Gary Kelly said.

Flights and seating capacity at the biggest discount carrier will be unchanged this year, and “we haven’t made a final decision about 2013 yet,” Kelly said today in an interview. “I don’t sense we’re going to see a significant increase in capacity in 2013, if we have any at all.”

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