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Delta Air Lines reports earnings beat, forecasts return to profit in Q2

Delta CEO Ed Bastian spoke with Yahoo Finance's Brad Smith about company earnings and expectations for the summer travel period.

Video Transcript

BRIAN SOZZI: Welcome back. Shares of Delta are taking off in the premarket here after some pretty upbeat earnings. Let's bring in Yahoo Finance's Brad Smith, who had a chance to speak with Delta CEO Ed Bastian. Brad.

BRAD SMITH: Hey, Brian, good to see you this morning. Yeah, we've been continuing to track a story of restoration in the airline industry. And Delta Air reporting Q1 earnings this morning. It continues to signal where the consumer profile has changed and how the company may reestablish profitability in the future as well.

On the financials, they saw adjusted net income come in at a loss of $784 million. That's actually better than the expected loss of $807 million. Earnings per share, that was a loss of $1.23 versus the expected loss of $1.26 there, so also better than expectations. And revenue was above expectations as well, $8.16 billion versus the $8.07 billion expected.

We also saw revenue reach 79% of the levels that the carrier was accustomed to pre-pandemic or during the before times, if you will. And what investors turned bullish on after the results dropped was the business operations returning to profitability during the month of March during a surge in consumer demand. I had the chance to speak with Delta Airlines CEO Ed Bastian, and here's what he had to say about their forecasts and what they're seeing right now.

ED BASTIAN: Well, over the last five weeks, we've experienced at Delta the highest level of sales and booking activity at any time in our history. It's an historic high, which is really remarkable. It tells us that people are ready to travel. People are confident in traveling. They have a significant amount of discretionary income that they saved during these last two years. And they're ready to go. And they're choosing Delta, and we continue seeing that. And I think it's going to be a very, very strong summer travel period for us going forward.

BRAD SMITH: So Delta Airlines is forecasting that during the second quarter, 84% of capacity will return when compared to the same period during 2019. They're also expecting revenue recovery to reach 93% to 97% of the pre-pandemic levels. That equates to a range of about $11.62 billion to $12.12 billion, Sozz.

BRIAN SOZZI: All right, Brad, and of course, you can check out Brad's full piece on this quarter from Delta now on the Yahoo Finance home page.