Spirit posts quarterly loss on pandemic, 737 MAX pain

Spirit posts quarterly loss on pandemic, 737 MAX pain

Spirit AeroSystems Holdings Inc reported a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss, hurt by fewer aircraft part shipments to top customers Boeing Co and Airbus following a slump in demand for air travel due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The headquarters of Spirit AeroSystems Holdings Inc, is seen in Wichita
FILE PHOTO: The headquarters of Spirit AeroSystems Holdings Inc, is seen in Wichita, Kansas, U.S. December 17, 2019. REUTERS/Nick Oxford

REUTERS: Spirit AeroSystems Holdings Inc reported a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss, hurt by fewer aircraft part shipments to top customers Boeing Co and Airbus following a slump in demand for air travel due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"2020 was one of the most challenging years in aviation history. For Spirit, the 737 MAX grounding and the COVID-19 pandemic created a dual-crisis," Spirit Chief Executive Officer Tom Gentile said.

The company now stands to benefit from ungrounding of the Boeing 737 MAX jet by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration in November after a 20-month ban. The MAX accounted for about 50per cent of Spirit's sales in 2019.

Spirit's total deliveries of shipsets, or complete sets of parts, fell 48.9per cent to 231 units in the fourth quarter. Boeing 737 MAX deliveries fell to 19 shipsets from 153 a year ago.

European planemaker Airbus last week forecast flat deliveries in 2021 as it braces for more coronavirus-induced uncertainty in the wake of an annual loss. Boeing has yet to set out detailed targets.

Spirit posted a loss of US$295.9 million, or US$2.85 per share, in the quarter ended Dec. 31, compared with a profit of US$67.7 million, or 65 cents per share, a year earlier.

On an adjusted basis, the company lost US$1.31 per share. Analysts had expected the company to report a loss of 85 cents per share, according to Refinitiv IBES data.

Total revenue decreased 55.3per cent to US$876.6 million.

(Reporting by Sanjana Shivdas in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)

Source: Reuters

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