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What: Shares of Hawaiian Airlines parent Hawaiian Holdings (NYSE: HA) soared more than 10% in intraday trading today after blowing away third-quarter profit estimates.

So What: Adjusted earnings fell to $0.55 a share, from $0.66 in the year-ago quarter. Of that $0.55, $0.14 was attributable to the release of accrued interest and tax benefits. But even then, Hawaiian’s $0.41 per share in core earnings beat the Street’s average estimate of $0.36.

Now What: In the wake of the merger of Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) and AirTran Holdings (NYSE: AAI), Hawaiian is the rare carrier that remains independent. But with the 2008 demise of Aloha Airlines, Hawaiian may not need to. The carrier accounts for 45% of the traffic at its home airport in Honolulu, and keeps more cash than debt on its balance sheet.

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Fool contributor Tim Beyers is a member of the Motley Fool Rule Breakers stock-picking team. He didn’t own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article at the time of publication. Check out Tim's portfolio holdings and Foolish writings, or connect with him on Twitter as @milehighfool. You can also get his insights delivered directly to your RSS reader. The Motley Fool is also on Twitter as @TheMotleyFool. Its disclosure policy is at least 10% better than other disclosure policies.