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US Airways sees 3Q loss
August 10, 2001: 9:30 a.m. ET

Sixth-largest U.S. carrier cites slump in business travel, sets $405M charge
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NEW YORK (CNNfn) - US Airways said Friday it expects a $160 million loss in the third quarter, excluding items, due to declining business travel revenue and will take a $405 million charge related to the write-down of aging aircraft.

The figure equals a loss of $2.39 a share excluding items. Analysts surveyed by earnings tracker First Call had forecast the nation's sixth-largest airline to post a loss of $1.16 a share before items.

However, a First Call spokesman cautioned Friday that US Airways (U: Research, Estimates) did not provide enough details to determine whether its revised guidance is comparable to Wall Street forecasts.

The company, which said it continued to experience weakness in business travel due to the slumping economy and declining consumer confidence, also expects a $405 million pre-tax charge in the third quarter related to the write down its fleet of Fokker 100, Boeing 737-200, and MD-80 aircraft and certain related assets in accordance with federal accounting principles.

The news closely follows US Airways' decision to terminate negotiations July 27 on a takeover by United Airlines after it became clear that U.S. regulators would oppose the deal.

A little-known holding company called Global Airlines Group has since made two bids for US Airways, which it has flatly rejected. Meanwhile, the carrier is awaiting a response from its pilots union on whether pilots will support efforts to substantially expand its fleet of regional jets.

US Airways shares ended 18 cents higher at $18.28 Thursday. graphic