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Chinese airline losses pared by accounting maneuver

Despite red ink, state-owned groups manage to improve cash position

HONG KONG -- China's biggest airlines, like their peers elsewhere, posted substantial losses for the first half of 2020 -- but their figures would have been even worse without a timely accounting change.

The combined revenue of China Southern Airlines, China Eastern Airlines and Air China, the country's state-owned "big 3" groups, fell 52.4% to 93.76 billion yuan ($13.65 billion) in the six months ended June 30. Their combined net loss reached 26.16 billion yuan, compared with a profit of 6.76 billion yuan a year earlier.

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