Delta Air to take up to $3 billion charge on voluntary retirement plans


Delta Air Lines said on Wednesday it would record charges of up to $3 billion on employee voluntary retirement and separation plans in the current quarter, as the U.S. carrier looks to cut costs due to the coronavirus crisis.

Delta, like other large U.S. airlines, has been encouraging workers to leave voluntarily before a government ban on forced job cuts expires on Sept. 30.

The company, which had more than 91,000 employees in 2019, said on Tuesday that about 17,000 of them opted for buyouts. Over 45,000 Delta employees are already on varying short-term leaves.

Delta had forecast third-quarter revenue and flight capacity to be around 20% to 25% of last summer, with demand stalling amid a surge in COVID-19 cases and a sustainable industry recovery more than two years away.

The Atlanta-based company posted a $2.8 billion adjusted net loss for the second quarter on Tuesday as passenger revenue plummeted 94% in what some analysts described as the worst season in aviation history.

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