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Southwest stories a lack of $ 915 million and warns that demand for journey with out a coronavirus vaccine will stay weak

Southwest Airline planes sit on February 20, 2019 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on the tarmac of Fort Lauderdale International Airport – Hollywood.

Joe Raedle | Getty Images

Southwest Airlines announced Thursday that it had lost $ 915 million in the second quarter, compared to $ 741 million in the previous year, and warned that demand for travel is likely to remain depressed until it receives a vaccine or treatment for the corona virus.

The airline said demand had declined in the past few weeks and repeated comments from other airline executives saying an increase in Covid 19 cases related to travel restrictions in states like New York had affected ticket sales, which started to recover late spring.

Southwest estimated capacity in the third quarter at 20-30% year over year.

Revenue decreased nearly 83% from $ 5.9 billion in the previous year to just over $ 1 billion, although quarterly sales were above analyst estimates.

"We were encouraged to see improvements in recreational traffic in May and June compared to March and April. However, the improving sales and booking trends stalled in July with the increase in COVID-19 cases," said CEO Gary Kelly in a profit release. "We expect demand for air travel to remain depressed until a vaccine or therapeutic agent to fight COVID-19 infection and spread is available."

Kelly said Southwest would "aggressively and frequently" adjust its flight schedule in "this volatile demand environment."

Southwest adjusted for a loss of $ 2.67 per share, roughly in line with analysts' forecasts.

The airline's shares rose by 0.5% in premarket trading.

Also on Thursday, American Airlines recorded a net loss of $ 2.1 billion in the second quarter.

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