Southwest Airlines says may not be profitable in third quarter

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The airline said cancellations had increased this month due to the variant, becoming the first major U.S. airline to flag a hit from the more infectious strain.

The company forecast third-quarter operating revenue to be down 15% to 20% versus 2019, a cut of about three to four points from its prior outlook issued three weeks ago.

Southwest said the effects of pandemic on August and September revenue trends would make it difficult for the company to be profitable in the third quarter of 2021.

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