Lufthansa unveils first quarter loss of 298 million euros

4th May 2010, Comments 0 comments

Lufthansa, the biggest European airline group, on Tuesday posted a worse-than-expected first quarter loss owing to several factors including high fuel costs and bitter winter weather.

Lufthansa said it made a loss of 298 million euros (390 million dollars) in the three-month period, below the average analyst forecast of 264 million compiled by Dow Jones Newswires.

The result was also worse than a loss of 267 million euros recorded by the carrier in the first quarter of 2009.

Europe's biggest airline by number of passengers also pointed to the cost of integrating loss-making subsidiaries like BMI and Austria Airlines, as well as a one-day pilots strike in February that cut earnings by 50 million euros.

Overall airline operations posted a loss of 330 million euros, 44 million worse than the year-earlier period, though sales gained 800 million euros to 5.8 billion, a statement said.

Shares in the carrier plunged by 3.5 percent to 12.21 euros in afternoon trading, while Frankfurt's DAX index was 1.57 percent lower overall.

Lufthansa is to publish more details of its first-quarter results on Wednesday.

© 2010 AFP

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