United Airlines has reported a $7.1 billion net loss for 2020, including $1.9 billion in the final quarter alone.
Cash burn at the airline rose to $33 million a day over the last three months of the financial year, up from $25 million a day in the third quarter.
Illustrating a deteriorating situation, the amount devoted to servicing debt and paying severance to employees rose from $4 million to $10 million a day in the fourth quarter.
United has cut 22,000 jobs so far during the crisis.
However, a percentage were temporarily recalled after United States lawmakers approved a further $15 billion in aid to the battered aviation industry last month.
The aid extends a programme to support payrolls until March 31st.
United forecasted that its capacity would be down 51 per cent in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the same period in 2019, and its revenue would be down 65-70 per cent.
“Aggressively managing the challenges of 2020 depended on our innovation and fast-paced decision making.
“But, the truth is that Covid-19 has changed United Airlines forever,” said United Airlines chief executive, Scott Kirby.
“The passion, teamwork and perseverance that the United team showed in 2020 is exactly what will help us build a new United Airlines that’s better, stronger and more profitable than ever.
“I could not be prouder of – and more grateful to – this team, which is going to lead us there.”
Rival Delta Air Lines reported losses of more than $15 billion last week.
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