Delta Air Lines’ Financial Performance Results in Profit at Year-End 2023

Delta Air Lines’ financial performance has resulted in a profit in its year-end results released on the 12th January. The company’s profit is moving in an upward trajectory with Delta Air Lines making more the three times the profit at year end in 2023 when compared to the previous year. Even in the previous year Delta Air Lines made a healthy profit of 1.318 billion US dollars. However even this was eclipsed by the 4.609 billion US dollar profit made in 2023. So Delta Air Lines’ financial performance, even after doing well in 2022, was even better than this in 2023, which is good news for the company.

Delta Air Lines has not had an easy time over the past few years. Like many, Delta Air Lines suffered during the pandemic. This is because during this time governments restricted international travel in order to curb the spread of Covid. As a result, demand for air travel slumped and many airlines made heavy losses at this time. Delta Air Lines’ financial performance also suffered. To make matters worse, once pandemic restrictions were lifted there was a surge in demand for flights which airlines and airports could not cope with as they were short staffed. This is because many staff had been laid off during the pandemic when demand was less and more time was now needed to re-recruit. As a result of this there was mass congestion at airports leading to many flight delays and cancellations. In the United States and Canada there was disruption during the Independence Day weekend in 2022 with over two thirds of flights being delayed as well as there being cancellations.

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© Delta Air Lines

Delta Air Lines’ Revenue

In terms of Delta Air Lines’ revenue (total money received), the company made 58.048 billion US dollars in the 12 months up to December 31st 2023. This was 15% higher than the 50.582 billion US dollars made in 2022. This is a significant increase in revenue and shows that the popularity of the airline has also improved over the past year. However, profit has increased to a greater extent. This means that cost control has also improved significantly over the past year.

In terms of Delta Air Lines’ financial performance here was also an improvement in profit when considering the fourth quarter separately when compared to the third quarter. The profit made in the most recent quarter was 2.037 billion US dollars which was over double the 1.108 billion US dollars profit made in the third quarter. This shows that the dip we saw in the third quarter when compared to the second quarter has also been more than reversed. In addition, even the loss making first quarter of the year was better than the loss at the same time in 2022. However, there is still scope for improvement here.

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© Delta Air Lines

Company Response and Outlook

In terms of the company’s response to Delta Air Lines’ financial performance, its Chief Executive Officer Ed Bastian has said that the company has delivered a record financial as well as operational performance. This means that in addition to performing well in terms of the finances, the company has also achieved records in its ability to deliver flights and other aspects of the service such as for example efficiency when dealing with customer requests. Bastian has also praised his staff for doing outstanding work and said that they are the foundation of Delta Air Lines’ success. He is also rewarding them with 1.4 billion US dollars in profit sharing in the following month.

In terms of the outlook for Delta Air Lines’ financial performance, Bastian has said that demand for air travel is strong and that the company’s customer base is in a healthy financial position. What this essentially means is that they are confident that they are popular enough to generate good revenue from customers.

One can see that Delta Air Lines’ financial performance over the year 2023 was much better than in 2022, even when considering the fact that the year 2022 still yielded a healthy profit. Delta Air Lines is clearly moving from strength to strength with the Chief Executive Officer Ed Bastian saying that its financial performance is at record levels. We have to wait to see how this progresses.

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Amuthan Chandrarajan
Amuthan Chandrarajan
Aviation Reporter - Amuthan has a background in residential and commercial real estate. He also has a keen interest in aviation and travel and has visited many countries. Amuthan has a sound knowledge of business and finance.  He has gained a Master of Business Administration and has become a Chartered Management Accountant. 
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