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LATAM airlines reports $2.12 billion first-quarter loss due to pandemic

LATAM Airlines plane is seen at Santiago International Airport

SANTIAGO (Reuters) - LATAM Airlines, the largest Latin American air transport group, had losses of $2.12 billion in the first quarter after an accounting adjustment of its assets amid the coronavirus pandemic, the company said in a statement late on Friday.

LATAM said its operational quarterly result was 17% higher year-on-year despite the fact that in March it reduced its offer of flights due to the first effects of the health crisis.

The firm mainly attributed the loss to a goodwill impairment loss of $1.73 billion as a result of the pandemic, the statement said.    "The accounting loss is a natural consequence of the impactthat COVID-19 has had over the entire industry, whereinevitably the assets of airlines are devalued due to the impossibility of operating," CEO Roberto Alvo said in the statement.

Revenue from ordinary activities fell 6.8% to$2.266 billion between January and March.    LATAM filed for U.S. bankruptcy protection on Tuesday, becoming the world's largest carrier so far to seek an emergency reorganization due to the pandemic.



(Reporting by Fabian Cambero, writing by Hugh Bronstein; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)