- Component supplier to the aerospace, defence and energy sectors Meggitt swung to a first-half loss after the Covid-19 crisis devastated the commercial airline sector.

Pre-tax losses for the six months through June amounted to £368m, compared to a profit of £73m on-year.

Revenue slumped 14% to £917m after growth in the company's defence business was more than offset by falls in aerospace and energy.

Meggitt said its performance reflected the pandemic's impact on the civil aerospace sector, though revenue was slightly ahead of its guidance provided on 2 July.

The company decided not to pay an interim dividend, in order to retain cash, manage net debt levels and preserve flexibility.

'We had a very challenging second quarter in which we acted fast, executed well operationally and took action to position the group for the recovery in civil aerospace,' chief executive Tony Wood said.

'Our first half performance was impacted by the ongoing effects of Covid-19 in our civil aerospace business driven by the unprecedented reduction in global air traffic activity.'

'We are still working through a difficult and uncertain COVID-19 environment, and while it's too early to precisely predict the trajectory of the return to prior levels of activity in civil aerospace, we continue to focus on ensuring that the business is well positioned to benefit from the recovery.'

'Based on the effective actions we've taken to strengthen liquidity and the resilience of the group, underpinned by our diverse end market exposure and strong market positions, we believe we are well placed to benefit from the recovery and to continue the transformation of Meggitt to deliver long-term, profitable growth.'

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