11 MAY 2015
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Lufthansa has posted a smaller operating loss in the first quarter, but said further action was needed to lower costs, especially in light of a rising pension burden and staff-related expenses. Lufthansa has a problem. It is fighting competition on two fronts – scheduled rival carriers from the Gulf and Turkey as well as low-cost carriers in Europe.
Lufthansa reported a first quarter adjusted loss before interest and tax of €133m (€209 in 2014) thanks to cheaper oil but said that its pension provisions had swelled to €10.2bn due to low interest rates.
Strikes by pilots, who oppose changes to retirement benefits and the expansion of low-cost services, will cost Lufthansa €100m (US$111m) in the first half of 2015.
Air France-KLM also reported a first-quarter operating loss last week decreasing to €417m from €445m a year earlier. www.lufthansa.com
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