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Saturday, March 2, 2024

SAS shares sink after more losses, big fine

Shares in Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) took a beating on Wednesday, after it released third-quarter results showing another large loss. On Tuesday, the airline was among several fined by the EU Commission for illegal price-setting on cargo.

SAS, which has been struggling for years, reported a pre-tax loss of just over SEK 1 billion, blaming several one-time hits including the EU’s fine (SEK 660 million), another fine involving a long-running dispute with rival Norwegian Air, and a settlement in the US that cost the SAS Group SEK 104 million.

On a brighter note, SAS claimed its operations had improved, that it had deployed an additional long-haul jet to meet rising demand for intercontinental travel and that it ranked as the world’s most punctual airline during the quarter. It earned SEK 387 million on continuing operations.

SAS officials also said they intend to appeal the EU’s fine. Even though they admit SAS’ internal regulations were broken, they deny they were part of an international cartel.

The Norwegian government owns a 14 percent stake in SAS, along with the governments of Sweden and Denmark and private investors, with the Scandinavian governments collectively holding 50 percent.

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