US passenger airlines Q2 loss passes $11 billion

The total US passenger airline sector in the United States lost US$11 billion after tax and $16.2 billion before tax, in the period April-June 2020 it was reported yesterday.

The loss was $15.8 billion down on the same period in 2019. These second-quarter losses are the second consecutive quarterly losses following 27 consecutive quarterly after-tax net profits and 35 consecutive quarterly pre-tax operating profits.

The vast bulk of the costs point to a worrying area – $9.5 billion of the costs were salaries and labour representing 45.7%. Just 4.3% was fuel.

This highlights the fact that the airlines, even as they will start to recover face huge employment bills for too many staff and more job losses in the medium term seem inevitable.