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Aviation Stocks Decline On Extended Lockdown, Buffett's Comments

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On Monday, shares of InterGlobe Aviation Ltd fell over 7 percent, SpiceJet was down 4.9 percent and Jet Airways fell 4.79 percent.

 

On Saturday, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said that all commercial passenger flights will remain suspended till midnight of 17 May.

Although the lockdown has been hard on Indian airlines that has caused their commercial operations to be halted, lease payments delayed and most aircrafts grounded, billionaire investor Warren Buffet's comments on the sector over the weekend may have caused further damage.

Aviation Stocks Decline On Extended Lockdown, Buffett's Comments

At the annual shareholders' meeting of his company Berkshire Hathaway, Buffet said, "I was wrong about that business," and explained that his company and its subsidiaries have now unloaded their entire stake in the US-based airlines.

"The airline business, and I may be wrong, and I hope I'm wrong, changed in a major way," he explained, noting that through no fault of the CEOs of the companies, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the outlook for the aviation sector and his company took the decision to withdraw investments "even at a substantial loss".

Berkshire Hathway began investing in the four airlines in 2016, after avoiding the aviation industry for years. As per its annual report, the conglomerate used to hold 11 percent stake in Delta Air Lines, 10 percent of American Airlines, 10 percent of Southwest Airlines, and 9 percent of United Airlines.

 

Buffett's comments on the aviation sector on Saturday came just hours after Berkshire Hathaway reported a record net loss of $50 billion for the March-ended quarter.

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