On the Call: AMR CFO Thomas Horton

AMR Corp., the parent of American Airlines, reported Wednesday that it lost $286 million in the second quarter, but that was overshadowed by the announcement that it made the biggest airline order ever for new planes.

AMR said it will get 460 planes from Airbus and Boeing Co. and take options for 465 more over the next several years.

Chief Financial Officer Thomas Horton suggested American bargained hard, even over small details such as whether American or the aircraft makers would pay to train the airline's pilots to fly the new Airbus planes — American doesn't have any Airbus jets in its fleet.

QUESTON: "With respect to training costs for the (Airbus A320) ... do you have to pay for that or will the manufacturers pick up those costs?"

RESPONSE: "There are incremental training costs associated with introducing a new fleet type ... but it is baked into the economics we shared with you all this morning which are overwhelmingly positive for replacing present airplanes with these new-generation airplanes. It is a big win for us, and we obviously drove this hard bargain as we could with the manufacturers, so you can bet that we took that into account."

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