PERFECT STORM HITS VIRGIN AS COMPANY POSTS WEAKEST QUARTER IN HISTORY

PERFECT STORM HITS VIRGIN AS COMPANY POSTS WEAKEST QUARTER IN HISTORY

OFF THE back one of the most severe weather events to hit Queensland in the past decade, Virgin Australia (ASX: VAH) has posted its weakest quarterly result to date.

Virgin has reported a statutory loss of $69 million for 3Q17, which amounts to a total statutory loss of $90.6 million for the nine months to 31 March 2017.

In a release to the market, Virgin said its performance during "what is historically the weakest quarter" was not only heavily impacted by Cyclone Debbie, but also by costs associated with its fleet simplification program, the effect of US-dollar fluctuations and tough domestic trading conditions.

According to the release, the one-off revenue impact of Tigerair Australia withdrawing its Bali operations also took its toll on the airline.

Even though it's been a turbulent period, Virgin still managed to reduce its total debt facility by more than $200 million in the last quarter.

It has also made progress toward its three-year better business initiative, which includes the offloading of its Embraer 190, ATR 72-500 and ATR 72-600 planes to simplify its fleet.

Virgin doesn't expect a repeat performance of its disastrous third quarter as it closes out the full year. It is forecasting an underlying performance lift in 4Q17.

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