Southwest Airlines to trim Q1 growth outlook after 737 Max groundings

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Southwest Airlines to trim Q1 growth outlook after 737 Max groundings

On Wednesday, the 27th of March, the Southwest Airlines Co., world’s largest low-cost carrier had formally slashed its financial outlook for the first quarter of 2019 in the face of latest groundings of Boeing 737 Max aircrafts.

In fact, the Dallas-based low-cost carrier had been the first major airlines to trim its quarterly outlook following a fatal crash of Boeing's 737 Max 8 on March 10th that killed 159 people on-board and triggered questions over the safety issue of auto-pilot software used in Boeing's 737 Max aircrafts.

Wednesday’s (March 27th) announcement of trimming first quarterly growth came forth, after Southwest Airlines had decided to extend the groundings of Boeing’s 737 Max till April 24th earlier this week. Following the reveal of the news, the shares of the largest operator of Boeing’s 737 Max, Southwest Airlines, having 34 aircrafts, had dwindled as much as 2.5 percent to $48.8 per share in pre-market trading.

While preparing this report, the share price of Southwest Airlines were 2.30 percent up at $49.67, largely buoyed by the reveal of new Max 737 auto-pilot software. However, the fourth leading US airlines, had also trimmed its capacity forecast for the first quarter of 2019 in the wake of a series of flight cancellation due to bad weather, maintenance disruptions, alongside groundings of its 34 Boeing Max 737 aircrafts.

According to data revealed on Wednesday (March 27th), the Dallas-based airlines might have to cancel about 9,400 flights through March 31st and they had been expecting to grow airlines capacity by 1 percent on Q1, 2018, while its previous growth forecast had remarked a figure between 3.5 to 4.0 percent.