Aviation Sector Confronts Turbulent Takeoff Into 2022

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A turbulent takeoff into 2022 has stalled the recovery in the global airline industry and eroded jet fuel demand in the first quarter. Flight cancellations from new outbreaks around the world of the Omicron variant, staff shortages and bad weather pose operational challenges that are likely to continue through February. Since the Christmas holiday US airlines have canceled about 29,000 flights, or about 8% of their scheduled services, according to data tracking firm FlightAware. But the worst may be over. Delta CEO Ed Bastian suggested on Thursday that Omicron is expected to delay the air traffic recovery by 60 days, and that its operations had already returned to pre-holiday performance.

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