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The Treasury Department Announces a Second Round of Airline Loans

By Howard Smith – Updated Jul 7, 2020 at 2:20PM

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The money was set aside in the CARES Act.

Five more U.S. airlines have signed letters of intent to accept federal aid under the CARES Act, CNBC reports. The Treasury Department previously announced agreements with the first group of airlines last week. The latest airlines to reach agreements are Delta Air Lines (DAL 0.69%), United Airlines Holdings (UAL 0.85%), JetBlue (JBLU 1.10%), Southwest Arlines (LUV 1.19%), and Alaska Air Group (ALK 1.65%)

Though airlines have been seeing an uptick in demand, capacity levels still significantly trail levels from a year ago. United recently announced it was adding 25,000 flights to its August flight schedule, but said that was still only around half the domestic capacity of a year ago.

Airplane taking off at sunset

Image source. Getty Images.

The Treasury didn't announce the amounts or terms for the loans. But United and Delta have previously said they were eligible for $4.5 billion and $4.6 billion, respectively, according to the CNBC report.

Airlines have been one of the hardest-hit industries during the pandemic. They have been working to raise money and cut costs, and are planning to resize staffing to match the lower flight capacities. Airlines that accepted payroll protection grants separately through the CARES Act committed to maintain employment levels through Sept. 30. Some are now sending out potential furlough notices anticipating cuts after that date.

The Treasury Department noted the amount of disruption the pandemic has brought, saying "The major U.S. airlines play a vital role in our economy and are critical to domestic and international travel and commerce."

Howard Smith has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Alaska Air Group, Delta Air Lines, JetBlue Airways, and Southwest Airlines. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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