Business

Air Canada reports $1.05B first-quarter loss due to impact of COVID-19 pandemic

Air Canada says it lost $1.05 billion in its first quarter compared with a profit of $345 million in the same quarter last year as governments imposed travel restrictions around the world due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Airline has cut its second-quarter capacity by 85 to 90 per cent from same time last year

An empty Air Canada check-in counter is seen at Montreal-Trudeau International Airport in Montreal, in this photo taken April 8, 2020. The airline reported a loss of more than $1 billion in its first quarter due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. (Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press)

Air Canada says it lost $1.05 billion in its first quarter compared with a profit of $345 million in the same quarter last year as governments imposed travel restrictions around the world due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The airline says the loss amounted to $4 per diluted share for the quarter compared with a profit of $1.26 per diluted share in the first quarter of 2019.

Operating revenue fell to $3.72 billion compared with $4.43 billion in the year-ago quarter.

On an adjusted basis, Air Canada says it lost $392 million, or $1.49 per diluted share, in the first quarter of this year compared with an adjusted profit of $17 million, or six cents per diluted share, in the first three months of 2019.

The airline has reduced its second-quarter capacity by 85 to 90 per cent when compared with the same quarter last year, while its third-quarter capacity is expected to be reduced by about 75 per cent compared with a year earlier.

Air Canada is also accelerating the retirement of 79 older aircraft in a move that it says will simplify the airline's fleet, reduce costs structure and lower its carbon footprint.

Watch: Justin Trudeau says federal government is considering support for sectors of the economy, including airlines 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke to reports on Monday 2:53

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