United Airlines - one of the world's largest employee-owned companies - achieved record income in the third quarter and gave a bullish forecast of future growth that helped lift shares across the sector. The company is expected to decide within the next two or three weeks whether or not to bid for the rival carrier USAir, in which British Airways - headed by Sir Colin Marshall (right) - has a 24.6 per cent stake. American Airlines is also considering a bid for USAir, although reports from Washington yesterday suggested that American was close to a link-up with British Airways. BA described the reports as pure speculation, but admits talking to a number of airlines about expansion in the US should it sell its stake in USAir.
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United nears USAir decision