Second consecutive quarterly profit during COVID-19 pandemic

U.S. scheduled passenger airlines reported a third-quarter 2021 after-tax net profit of $2.7 billion and a pre-tax operating loss of $187 million.

The third-quarter positive after-tax net profit is the second consecutive quarterly profit and the second quarterly profit since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The airlines increased their second-quarter profit ($1.0 billion) by 170%. The third-quarter pre-tax operating loss of $187 million was also improved from the second-quarter loss of $3.6 billion.

U.S. airline financial reports are filed quarterly with the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS). See the tables that accompany this release on the BTS website for additional third-quarter 2021 financial results (Tables 1-6).

Payroll protection payments received by airlines are included as net income. Payroll protection payments used for salaries are included as labor expenses.