EasyJet warns first ever annual loss could top $1 billion

By Sarah Young

LONDON (Reuters) – British airline easyJet warned on Thursday its first ever annual loss could be as much as 845 million pounds ($1.1 billion) as the pandemic meant it was flying just 25% of planned capacity.

The airline has signalled to the government it may need more financial support, according to media reports.

The headline loss before tax forecast for the year ended Sept. 30 of 815-845 million pounds was worse than the loss of 794 million expected by analysts, Refinitiv Eikon data showed.

That is the first time easyJet, which was founded in 1995, has ever made a full-year loss.

With travel at very low levels, most European airlines are bleeding cash. EasyJet’s larger low-cost rival Ryanair has called this winter a “write-off”.

EasyJet said ongoing travel restrictions meant it would fly just 25% of planned capacity for the rest of 2020, behind Ryanair which is

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