UAL Corp.'s announcement Friday of a $16.9 billion fourth-quarter loss and a full-year loss of $21.18 billion overshadowed significant operational improvements at United Airlines as it approaches its exit from bankruptcy next month. And executives are confident the carrier is on the right course, as the staggering on-paper loss will be wiped out upon emergence as unsecured claims are settled "for a minor fraction of the amount of the claims recorded," leaving it expecting a "substantial ...

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