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SkyWest delays financial reports

Auditor asks for additional time to finish work

SkyWest Inc., the St. George-based holding company of SkyWest Airlines, announced today that it has postponed the release of its fourth quarter and 2002 year-end earnings statements until Wednesday, March 19.

Michael Kraupp, SkyWest vice president of finance, vehemently maintained that the delay is not a sign of financial problems.

"The sole reason we're delayed is because our independent auditor, KPMG, has requested additional time to perform their work," Kraupp said. "Once you complete an audit, it has to go through a review process. They simply didn't get to the point where they thought they'd be by March 14. It's as simple as that. We're very reliant on them completing their work."

In November, the company delayed its report for the period ending Sept. 30, 2002, because KPMG would not certify its results. At that time, SkyWest stated that the auditors determined that certain revenues and expenses may not have been accurately reported.

Last month, SkyWest restated its earnings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, citing changed accounting principles. For the nine months ended Sept. 30, 2002, the company reported a net income of $69.1 million, compared to its previously-stated income of $55.6 million.

In early trading Friday, SkyWest's stock was up 20 cents, at $9.50 per share. During the last year, the company's stock has fluctuated between $8.60 and $26.45 per share.

SkyWest Airlines operates as United Express and Delta Connection under marketing agreements with United Airlines and Delta Air Lines, respectively. The airline serves 98 cities in 28 states and two Canadian provinces.